The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) announcement of £25 million to generate 20,000 new Apprenticeships has been welcomed by EAL, the specialist awarding organisation for industry qualifications.
EAL, which supports industry Apprenticeship programmes in engineering, manufacturing, building services and related sectors throughout the UK, is already working to break down the barriers facing companies and help young people benefit from an Apprenticeship.
Ann Watson, Managing Director at EAL, said: “With youth unemployment breaking 1 million, the need to boost and protect the Apprenticeship badge has never been greater. The measures outlined today by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills will hopefully provide a valuable incentive for employers to take on an apprentice and give them the skills, training and experience required to work within industry.
“The recent rise in engineering and manufacturing Apprenticeships pales in comparison to Apprenticeships in business, administration and law*. As well as the Government business payment incentives, we hope the simplification of processes to make it easier for employers to take on an apprentice will address this disparity, providing skilled workers where they are needed most.
“We reiterate the comments of Business Secretary Vince Cable that Apprenticeships remain the gold standard for vocational training and welcome the quality review of Apprenticeship provision. This will help ensure and maintain the rigorous standards that all young people entering an Apprenticeship deserve.”
* According to figures published by The Data Service for 2009/10, the number of Apprenticeship starts in engineering and manufacturing technologies in the UK was 37,860, rising by 24% to 47,020 by 2010/11 (provisional). In comparison, there were 76,590 starts in business, administration and law during 2009/10, rising by 70% to 130,290 in 2010/11. Full details can be found here.