HE Ini­tia­tive to take on more ap­pren­tices gains fund­ing

Herald Express - - Puzzle -

ANEW ini­tia­tive to in­crease the num­ber of peo­ple from dis­ad­van­taged com­mu­ni­ties tak­ing up high-qual­ity ap­pren­tice­ships op­por­tu­ni­ties has been launched in Tor­bay.

Along­side three other lo­cal au­thor­i­ties – Portsmouth, Not­ting­ham and South Ty­ne­side – Tor­bay has been se­lected to take part in the new ‘Op­por­tu­ni­ties Through Ap­pren­tice­ships’ pi­lot scheme.

Each of the four ar­eas has pledged to work with em­ploy­ers, train­ing providers and lo­cal part­ners to pro­mote and en­cour­age peo­ple to con­sider do­ing ap­pren­tice­ships in key sec­tors such as En­gi­neer­ing, Man­u­fac­tur­ing, Con­struc­tion and ICT.

This will in­clude de­vel­op­ing an ac­tion plan to help break down bar­ri­ers and sup­port in­di­vid­u­als to ac­cess ap­pren­tice­ships in their lo­cal area, and pro­mot­ing higher level ap­pren­tice­ships as a great way to work with some of the UK’s key em­ploy­ers.

Tor­bay’s mayor, Gor­don Oliver, said: “I am de­lighted to see this ini­tia­tive be­ing de­liv­ered in Tor­bay.

“We have a high num­ber of qual­ity en­gi­neer­ing, man­u­fac­tur­ing and con­struc­tion com­pa­nies in Tor­bay that of­fer ap­pren­tice­ship op­por­tu­ni­ties.

“With part­ners, Tor­bay Coun­cil will con­nect our com­mu­ni­ties and busi­nesses to re­alise the po­ten­tial of ap­pren­tice­ship schemes and develop skills and em­ploy­ablity as part of our eco­nomic strat­egy.”

Carl Wyard, Econ­omy and En­ter­prise Man­ager for TDA, said: “Ap­pren­tice­ships of­fer a great way for our busi­ness com­mu­nity to grow; bring­ing in new skills or de­vel­op­ing ex­ist­ing staff skills can yield div­i­dend to a com­pany’s bot­tom line.

“It’s also a great way for peo­ple in or out of work to develop their skills and their ca­reer.

“TDA is work­ing with lo­cal part­ners to of­fer a se­ries of ap­pren­tice­ship fo­cussed events that will run dur­ing Na­tional Ap­pren­tice­ship Week next March.

“Our aim is to bring com­mu­ni­ties, em­ploy­ers and train­ing providers to­gether to in­crease both the num­ber and value of ap­pren­tice­ships.”

The next step is to develop an ac­tion plan and Tor­bay is look­ing to Na­tional Ap­pren­tice­ship Week as a Launch­pad for the project.

Large firms are bet­ter geared up to take on ap­pren­tice­ships than small and medium-sized en­ter­prises (SME’s), how­ever the back­bone to Tor­bay’s econ­omy are SME’s.

This project will en­able SME’s to be bet­ter in­formed and sup­ported when tak­ing on ap­pren­tice­ships.

De­spite chal­lenges around Brexit, Tor­bay com­pa­nies are grow­ing and forg­ing ahead with their growth plans; bring­ing higher value ap­pren­tice­ships into these busi­nesses will help them to re­alise their goals and grow the econ­omy.

Ap­pren­tice­ships of­fer peo­ple of all ages the chance to earn while they learn, with op­tions to train right up to de­gree level in a range of ex­cit­ing and re­ward­ing jobs.

The Govern­ment is work­ing with em­ploy­ers across the coun­try to cre­ate more high qual­ity ap­pren­tice­ships to change the lives of ap­pren­tices and so that busi­ness have ac­cess to the higher skills they need for a rapidly chang­ing world.

Anne Mil­ton, Min­is­ter of State for Ap­pren­tice­ships and Skills said: “We want to in­crease the num­ber of peo­ple tak­ing up ap­pren­tices from more dis- ad­van­taged ar­eas. This ex­cit­ing new project will pro­vide peo­ple of all ages a great op­por­tu­nity to do ex­actly that, es­pe­cially in grow­ing en­gi­neer­ing and ICT sec­tors.

“An ap­pren­tice­ship gives some­one the chance to get new skills, get a bet­ter job and get on in a ca­reer.”

This work forms part of the govern­ment’s com­mit­ment to im­prove so­cial mo­bil­ity by cre­at­ing more high qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for peo­ple across the coun­try. The project will help iden­tify and spread ‘what works’ so that suc­cess­ful ap­proaches can be adopted more widely.

The pi­lot projects will run un­til 2020. Their suc­cess will be eval­u­ated and learn­ings will be shared across other lo­cal au­thor­i­ties in Eng­land.

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