Comments are closed. Secretary of State for Education and Skills Charles Clarke has promised morejoined-up thinking for the post-16 years education and training sector, andless bureaucracy. His plans were announced as details were released to make the ModernApprentice (MA) scheme more attractive to employers by making skills morerelevant and flexible. Addressing the Association of Learning Providers’ Partners in Learning 2003conference, Clarke said: “A diverse and strong provider base is vital toour plans in the post-16 sector to allow all our young people to reach theirpotential, to give those whose main-stream education has failed, a vital secondchance and lay firm foundations for lifelong learning.” He drew attention to the employers’ agenda. “A high-quality, crediblenetwork of work-based learning providers is essential to ensure employers’skills needs are understood and training is in place to meet them,” hetold delegates at the conference in Birmingham last month. The DfES is pressing on with its promotion of Modern Apprenticeships and hasset targets of 28 per cent of 16-21 year olds entering the scheme by 2004/05.Latest estimates show it will have achieved 99 per cent of its interim targetsfor 2002/03 with 149,000 young people being part of the system. It has promised to work with the new employer-led MA Taskforce to promotethe scheme and steer their future development. Speaking after the conference, deputy chairman of the new taskforce IanFerguson said employers still perceived MAs as being too bureaucratic andinflexible .” Ferguson, chairman of software company Data Connection, wants to seeemployers take their own initiative to develop MA models which would then be approvedby Sector Skills Councils “But the first thing to do is improveawareness,” he said. “And we need to do more work to make them moreflexible.” Ferguson said it is recognised that many young people need extra support.”In August the new Entry to Employment programme will be rolled outnationally, ” he said. “This is for disadvantaged and disaffectedyoung people to gain the skills needed to progress to Foundation MAs,employment or further vocational learning.” Clarke had outlined the need for bureaucracy to be pruned – a challengehanded to the chairman of the Bureaucracy Taskforce, Sir George Sweeney, whowill draw up recommendation for work-based learning providers following similarwork last year on Further Education colleges. “The aim is to try to identify those things the system generates whichare not serving the interests of young people,” Sweeney told TrainingMagazine. “The more pounds we can push down to the frontline, thebetter,” he said. Sweeney’s department will set up a ‘star chamber’ of regulations, publishits conclusions and produce a final report in March 2004. By Stephanie Sparrow Related posts:No related photos. Government revamps post-16 education to make it more relevant to employersOn 1 Jun 2003 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article
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