You could be forgiven for not having heard of postgraduate degree apprenticeships, also known as level 7 apprenticeships, which were launched in March 2015 with just 30 learners. But these master’s-level programmes have big potential.
The Department for Education says it expects uptake to increase when the apprenticeship levy comes into force in May. And while only a few apprenticeships are available, such as in systems engineering or digital technology solutions, there are plenty more in the works, including teaching.
With level 7 apprenticeships, students will have an undergraduate degree or equivalent, and be expected to be working for their sponsor company.
The government has finally announced the eight Institute for Apprenticeships board members (listed below), with the chair to be confirmed at a later date.
This will come as a relief to the sector after FE Week’s front page last week reported concern that the government remained silent on board members and other permanent leadership posts, under three months before the Institute become “fully operational”.
The Department for Education advertised for paid board members last June, and they comprise of a majority of employers as planned, but two are serving college principals.
This has been welcomed by chief executive of the Association of Colleges David Hughes, but the immediate response from the independent training provider sector was one of disappointment that it is not represented (see quotes below).
The government has also published the long-awaited IfA operational plan which “sets out how the Institute for Apprenticeships will take forward the programme of reform and raise the quality of apprenticeships.”
Responsibilities for integrity, quality and funding give the new Institute for Apprenticeships a potentially vital and lasting role in the national skills infrastructure but only if its role is fully formed and it has the space to both support and constructively challenge the progress that the reforms are making.
The introduction of the levy sees a fundamental shift in the balance of funding away from the public purse and firmly towards employers. The Institute is therefore a very welcome further manifestation of employer ownership and leadership. It needs to do the job that businesses need while ensuring it secures the support and confidence of three million more (mostly) young people whose lives will be shaped by their Apprenticeship experiences.
While it has taken a long time for the detail of the new Institute for Apprenticeships to be revealed, at least in draft form, there are reasons to believe that this body can make a difference if responses to the consultation pick up on the big opportunities that are presented.
After an amazing evening at the stellar National Apprenticeship Awards 2016 ceremony last week (January 20), FE Week caught up with the country’s top three apprentices.
The winners shared their thoughts on what the awards meant to them and what could be on the horizon as they continue to drive forward with their promising careers.
Here they are in their own words…
Charlotte Blowers, 19
Adam Sharp, 22
Holly Broadhurst, 23
The number of young people employed as apprentices in England is “a disaster” and Ofsted inspectors will be ensuring schools are promoting “all the options” to learners, chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw has told MPs.
Sir Michael appeared in front of the new education select committee on Wednesday (September 16), where he faced questions about the role of Ofsted.
Quizzed by MPs about the importance of destination data for both schools and colleges, Sir Michael said an “important” line of questioning for school head teachers would be about post-16 options and careers advice.
He said: “What’s really important for inspections of secondary schools is that HMI ask questions about post-16 provision, whether schools and head teachers of secondary schools are providing youngsters with all the information that they need to make good choices and not restricting that information to get youngsters into their own sixth form.”
“That’s really important and that’s going to be a big emphasis this year. We are going to be asking a lot more about careers guidance than ever before,” he added.
Apprenticeships can help drive a high-skill, high wage economy and give young people the skills they need to hit the ground running. Primarily for 16-24 year olds but older adults too, apprenticeships mean people can earn while they learn, receive on the job training, a wage, and a nationally-recognised qualification at the end of it.
This new campaign will kick off on Monday 9th of March during National Apprenticeship Week in partnership with Youthforce.
You’re Hired East Sussex is a county-wide campaign led by East Sussex County Council in partnership with the National Apprenticeship Service, the district and borough councils, colleges, training providers, Association of Chambers, Federation of Small Businesses, Youth Employability Service and Apprenticeships in Sussex.
This aims to find 500 businesses/schools across the five district and boroughs of East Sussex to support 500 work-ready young people into apprenticeships within five months.
Another objective is to help local businesses and local schools strengthen their workforce, and create job and training opportunities for young people. Furthermore, it will outline the benefits apprenticeships can bring to businesses, and highlight the support available for businesses considering this route.
The campaign will culminate in a closing ceremony in September to celebrate the number of pledges received from the businesses taking part and the young people beginning their apprenticeships.
Get involve on Twitter using the hashtag #YoureHiredES