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Government must build on Holt Report apprenticeship recommendations

The Electrical Contractors’ Association (ECA) cautiously welcomes the Government’s response to the publication of the Holt Report into apprenticeships and SMEs. However, it says that more must be done to promote transparency in the further education sector if apprenticeship training quality is to improve.

Iain Macdonald, ECA Head of Education and Training

Iain Macdonald, ECA Head of Education and Training (pictured), says: “The ECA was a key contributor to the report. We’re delighted that the Government agrees with the recommendations that the National Apprenticeship Service works more closely with trade associations to promote apprenticeships to smaller firms, and that industry should play a more influential role in defining quality apprenticeship training. SMEs are the lifeblood of UK plc. They must be supported to take on apprentices with the skills to help them grow, which would also help reverse youth unemployment.

“However, we are concerned that the Government has not been more robust in supporting calls for more transparency from further education providers. Government should insist that colleges provide information about course outcomes, just like we have school league tables and the university employability index. Without this accountability, young people won’t have all the details they need to make the right choice for their future; SMEs won’t be able to tell who offers industry recognised training; and industry efforts to better define quality apprenticeship providers won’t be supported on the ground.”

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