Apprenticeships ‘must address distinct needs of teens’

The Institute for Public Policy Research wants lower level apprenticeships replaced by a pre-apprenticeship programme addressing 16- to 18-year-olds’ “distinct needs”. Its report comes as universities are awarded £4.5m to develop 5,200 degree level apprenticeships from September.

Apprenticeships Minister Robert Halfon said apprenticeship programmes and traineeships were part of the government’s strategy to ensure that people of all backgrounds and all ages “can get on the ladder of opportunity”. He said that the existing apprenticeship programme for 16- to 18-year olds would boost participants’ earnings, “by up to £74,000 more over their lifetime, thanks to the skills they gain”.He also argued that degree apprenticeships would “give people a real chance to earn while you learn putting you on the fast-track to a top career”.

Degree apprentice courses will include nursing, construction, cybersecurity, food manufacturing, health care science and early years teaching.

The IPPR report says level-two apprenticeships for younger learners “are often very job specific, do not include much off the job training, and from next year they will not be required to include a recognised qualification” “These sort of training programmes may make sense for adults who are already in work and looking to ‘top up’ their skills – however, they are not sufficient to help young people with relatively low levels of education get a foot on the career ladder,” it says. Read More