Although a record number of young people are on apprenticeships, a new report has called for a radical increase to boost the economy and social mobility.
The Sutton Trust report draws on what’s happening in other countries to set out a plan to transform skills and opportunities for young people in England.
The report claims that last year our international competitors created more apprenticeships, especially at level 3; per 1000 staff, the number of new apprenticeships was:
- 43 in Switzerland
- 40 in Germany,
- 39 in Australia,
- 33 in Austria and
- six in the UK.
Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton trust, said: England’s patchwork vocational system not only hinders out economic performance, it prevents hundreds of thousands of young people from gaining good job skills. Many countries value those who train in the workplace and study at the same time as highly, if not more highly, than those who attend university. We need a step change in the provision of real apprenticeships for all occupations, from bankers to bakers, and a revolution in how they are regarded in society.”
Amongst the report’s recommendations are the creation of 300,000 high quality three-year apprenticeships and radical improvements to careers advice in schools.
However, the Association of Colleges questions whether the proposals are realistic, FE News reports. “Creating 300,000 apprenticeships, when the report acknowledges there is already a shortage of apprenticeship places for 16 to 18 year-olds, would be a massive challenge,” its Teresa Frith said, “Although we agree that there is a business case for employers to take on apprentices, at the moment too few do.”
Do you agree with the recommendations from the Sutton Trust, or are they simply unrealistic?