CRC welcomes government moves on apprenticeships
Cambridge Regional College has welcomed moves by the Government to tighten up control of underperforming apprenticeship providers.
CRC principal Anne Constantine
The college, which runs one of the region’s most successful apprenticeship programmes, says it is important to maintain a nationwide standard of training for apprentices.
CRC principal Anne Constantine said: “At CRC we have more than 2,400 apprentices currently in training, working in a huge variety of sectors from engineering and catering to science and hairdressing. We work with more than 700 employers, and our programmes have been widely praised – including by the deputy prime minister.
“We are very pleased that the Government is taking steps to ensure that the high standard of most apprenticeship providers extends to all, so that apprentices receive the best possible training.
“We also welcome the help the Government is offering to small and medium-sized employers in the form of a £1,500 grant when recruiting their first 16 to 24 year-old apprentice.”
This week, Mr Hayes announced that apprenticeships would last for a minimum of 12 months, guaranteeing improvements in training and workplace learning. He said the new standards would come into force for all age groups from August this year, subject to consultation with providers and employers, as a further measure to drive up quality.
“The majority of apprenticeships are the gold standard in vocational training. They boost individuals’ life chances and build the skills that drive growth,” said Mr Hayes.
“They also provide a great return on public money. This has been independently recognised with the National Audit Office finding that apprenticeships generating £18 for the economy for every £1 spent.
“But we must be relentless in our drive to ensure all apprenticeships are as good as the best, to identify and root out any instances of poor quality provision, and to raise the bar on standards.
“We are taking strong and decisive action to tackle short duration so all apprentices receive high quality training and workplace learning setting them on the road to a long, rewarding career.”
David Way, chief executive of the National Apprenticeship Service, added:
“We listened very carefully to messages from colleges and training providers at the National Quality Conference last week.
“We need to ensure that all apprenticeships are high quality. By ensuring they last between one and four years, we are not only giving employers what they say they want but also giving confidence back to everyone who has questioned the growth in shorter apprenticeships.”
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