A-LEVEL students have been praised for their efforts by a senior Rotherham business chief — but he urged more young people to opt for science subjects.
Thousands of students picked up their results last week, while thousands more will find out their GCSE results on Thursday.
Andrew Denniff, chief executive of Barnsley and Rotherham Chamber of Commerce, said he hoped that the teenagers could use their qualifications to get good careers and boost the economy.
Mr Denniff said: “The Chamber would like to congratulate all the A-Level students who have received their results in our region.
“It is the culmination of months and years of hard academic and vocational study which we all hope will give the young people their first step onto the career ladder.
“A-Levels should not be an end in itself but a means to enable young people to open doors.
“That could include giving them the requisite qualifications to enter the world of work or more often it is the case that they go on to to study on higher education courses.
“Both routes will give our young people firm foundations for the future.”
But Mr Denniff said that more youing people needed to take science A-Levels to plug the skills gap being experienced by the country in this sector.
He said: “In relation to industry, the science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) sectors are facing huge skills shortages.
“In fact in the UK we have a shortfall of around 20,000 STEM graduates each year.
“This skills gap could be set to widen as we’ve seen take-up of sciences fall even further.
“We need to do all we can to increase participation and interest in science-related subjects.
“We could start by addressing the growing gender gap, as there is almost four times more male pupils taking physics than females.”