Prime minister David Cameron has called on teachers to do more to promote apprenticeships to their pupils.
Mr Cameron said the apprentices he meets rarely claim to have heard about opportunities at school compared to other methods such as word-of-mouth or using online resources, the Telegraph reports.
He called on teachers to explain why not enough youngsters are choosing to become apprentices rather than going to university.
The Conservatives have pledged to create three million more apprenticeships over the course of the next parliament if re-elected in May.
Ofsted chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw has revealed plans to impose tougher penalties on schools that fail to provide adequate careers advice for pupils.
Speaking to Rolls-Royce workers at a factory in West Sussex, the prime minister said the coalition had boosted job prospects for apprentices but added that more could be done.
One of the areas in which further progress needs to be made is the quality of careers advice in schools, he remarked. Pupils should be given information about the apprenticeship route as well as the university pathway.
"This is not a criticism of teachers but most teachers did A-levels, filled out a Ucas form, went to university. They are very familiar with that path and we need to make sure the careers advice in schools offers both pathways," the prime minister remarked.
He suggested that youngsters could be informed about the prospect of earning money more quickly than their peers who study for three years before looking for a job.
The prime minister said he would provide more guidance for children by providing data on the employment prospects and likely salary for each university, academic course and apprenticeship.
Posted by Harriet McGowan