APPRENTICE NUMBERS SHARPLY UP IN MID WORCESTERSHIRE
News Story

The increase in the number of apprenticeships in Mid Worcestershire is being welcomed by the constituency’s MP, Peter Luff.


Speaking to constituents at a dinner in Fladbury tonight (Friday), Peter will say,

“This government has delivered a record number of apprenticeships in England, with half a million people starting an apprenticeship last year. Thanks to the Government’s investment, 142 more young people in England are starting an apprenticeship every single day.”

In Mid Worcestershire,

• 840 people started an apprenticeship last year.
• That’s an increase of 410 apprentices compared to the last year of the previous government.
• That means the number of people starting an apprenticeship has increased by 95 per cent.

Peter added,

“It’s wonderful news that 840 people in Mid Worcestershire started an apprenticeship last year.

“We are getting behind people who work hard and want to get on in life.

“Apprenticeships are a great way to help people get the skills they need to make a better future for themselves.

“I want many more local people in to have the chance to earn and learn at the same time as an apprentice. I urge everyone to think about whether they can benefit from the many apprenticeship opportunities that are now available. And I thank all the local employers who have made this welcome increase possible.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

Official statistics on the number of apprenticeships have been published today by the Data Service (The Data Service, Quarterly Statistical First Release: Post-16 Education & Skills: Learner Participation, Outcomes and Level of Highest Qualification Held, 11 October 2012, link).

The national picture

The release includes provisional statistics for the academic year 2011-12 for England. They show:

• A record half a million people started an apprenticeship last year. 502,500 people in England started an apprenticeship in 2011-12. This is a record number and the first time ever that more than half a million people have started an apprenticeship in one year.

• An 80 per cent increase in apprenticeships under this Government. 222,800 more people started an apprenticeship in 2011-12 compared to 2009-10, Labour’s last year in power. This represents an 80 per cent increase in the number of people starting an apprenticeship under the Coalition.

• 142 more young apprentices every single day. The number of people aged under 25 starting an apprenticeship increased by 52,000 between 2009-10 and 2011-12. This is equivalent to an extra 142 young apprentices every day.

• Advanced and Higher apprenticeships see the biggest increases. More than double the number of people are now starting Advanced and Higher apprenticeships. Between 2009-10 and 2011-12, the number of people starting an Advanced apprenticeship increased by 105 per cent, while the number starting a Higher (or degree-level) apprenticeship increased by 133 per cent.

Although these provisional statistics are subject to revision, the official release states that ‘revisions are typically upward’.

What the Government is doing

• Investing in more apprenticeships. Over the lifetime of this parliament, we will fund 250,000 more apprenticeships than the last government planned (Hansard, 23 March 2011, Col. 961).

• Cash bonuses for small companies taking on young apprentices. We are offering employers with 50 employees or fewer up to £1,500 for taking on an apprentice aged between 16 and 24. This will support up to 40,000 new apprenticeships in 2012/13 (BIS Press Release, 7 February 2012, link).

• Investing in degree-level apprenticeships. At the moment, there aren’t enough opportunities for progression to further learning for apprentices. That is why we have established a £25 million Higher Apprenticeships Fund, to support up to 10,000 degree-level apprenticeships in areas such as aerospace and renewable energy technologies (BIS Press Release, 22 July 2011, link).

• Making it quicker and easier for employers to take on an apprentice. The National Apprenticeships Service and training providers will be required to ensure that every employer is able to advertise a vacancy within one month of deciding to take on an apprentice (BIS Press Release, 16 November 2011, link).

• Targeting apprenticeships where they are needed. We are renewing the programme’s focus on younger adults, new employees, higher level qualifications and particular sectors where apprenticeships can make the greatest impact (BIS Press Release, 16 November 2011, link).

• Equipping apprentices with basic skills. Apprenticeship providers are now required to offer all apprentices teaching in English and Maths up to the standard of a good GCSE (BIS Press Release, 16 November 2011, link).

• Cutting bureaucracy. Coalition measures to cut red tape for employers taking on apprentices include: piloting a ‘payment by outcomes’ system to eliminate a number of data returns and audit requirements; providing an online plain-English toolkit for employers; streamlining contracting arrangements; committing to no ‘in year’ changes to contracting arrangements, introducing a more proportionate approach to audit and inspection, reducing preparation time for employers; greater use of electronic information to reduce paperwork; and a more streamlined certification process (BIS Press Release, 6 September 2011, link).


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