Isa Mutlib

If someone was to say in January that the country (and the world for that matter) would shut down, there would be mass unemployment and we would be facing both a health and economic crisis, then you’d agree that it would have to have been unprecedented.

So here we are on day 85 and it's got me thinking about all our preparations that we were making for this year, all the plans we made that were then halted in March.

This year was supposed to be a big year for apprenticeships. In 2015, when the then Business Secretary Sajid Javid launched the Government’s masterplan for apprenticeships, ambitious targets were set to see 3 million apprenticeship starts by 2020.

Within this as many know, the government also set a target of increasing BAME (black, asian and minority ethnic) representation by 20% by 2020. This was to be aided by the introduction of the apprenticeship levy to drive growth in apprenticeship numbers, particularly from large employers.

Fast forward a few years and how have we done?

In short, BAME proportions have increased since the levy reforms, but this has not been consistent across all elements of the group. The proportion of BAME starts has been increasing through time; but this has been of a smaller programme – with BAME volumes decreasing since the levy reforms by c10% (compared to 25% for starts by White apprentices).

BAME image

Now midway through 2020, in the midst of a severe economic recession and a health crisis, the scale of the impact is becoming apparent. According to research by the learning and work institute, ‘one in three working-age adults is either unemployed, furloughed or receiving income support for the self-employed’, wiping out a five year employment gain in a single month. This could mean up to 4.5 million people unemployed once the chancellor’s support ends.

However, what’s more striking is the impact on young people. 

Firstly on apprentices, according to the Sutton Trust research on impact of coronavirus on apprenticeships, up to 61% of apprentices have lost out on valuable work experience or learning as a result of the pandemic with one in 13 being made redundant. 

Then there’s those who will be entering the labour market after full time education. 600,000 young people will face a disrupted education system, a weaker labour market and a reduction in advertised roles. 

Beneath these figures is the significant impact it will have on disadvantaged communities, particularly those from BAME backgrounds. 

Over the last few years with the small but significant rise in apprentices from BAME backgrounds, we have heard and seen the impact apprenticeships have on the apprentices and their families, their companies and the local and national economy. 

We already know that apprenticeships have a significant impact on the economy - apprenticeships were a significant aid in recovering from the financial crash in 2008/09 to meet the skills needed then. 

Right now, having access to an apprenticeship is all the more imperative. Prior to the coronavirus, we were on the verge of apprenticeships becoming a valid and valuable alternative to traditional further education seen within BAME communities. We saw companies increasing representation of the workforce to reflect the communities and customers they serve, ultimately boosting their economic prosperity. And we saw a reduction of youth unemployment from BAME communities. 

Apprenticeships and the support services attached have been a key driver for social mobility within deprived communities and it is really important for the Government to continue supporting apprenticeships for BAME communities and the support services to ensure that no young person is left behind. 

I recently supported the letter to the Prime Minister for the Opportunity Guarantee which looks at promoting job creation by reducing costs and barriers for employers hiring, increasing careers service capacity and securing opportunities for all young people after full time education. 

However, I wanted to extend this further by sharing further recommendations for Government to:

  • Continue investment into the Five Cities project which supports BAME communities in building awareness of apprenticeships and bridges gaps with employers
  • Incentivise employers to increase outreach into BAME communities with focus on local communities
  • Incentivise local organisations to build capacity for youth employment services, mental health, financial education services for BAME youth 
  • Regenerate focus on 16-18 year old for apprenticeships

BAME communities are in desperate need of support to increase household prosperity and with the recommendations above, we will be able to kickstart the economy for recovery and growth for the disadvantaged.

Isa Mutlib is the CEO of The BAME Apprenticeship Alliance  - a community of organisations that aims to promote apprenticeship diversity through policy, advocacy and conversations.

Isa is also the founder of The Apprenticeship Hack, a workforce edtech where organisations can build a foundation to their own equality, diversity and inclusion through empowering their apprentices.

You may also be interested in these articles:

Advertisers

Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Newsroom Activity

FE News: The Future of Education News Channel had a status update on Twitter 19 hours 43 minutes ago

RT @FENews: NGWLive: Network Rail: NGWLive: Network Rail https://t.co/zqS6YwqgxP
View Original Tweet

FE News: The Future of Education News Channel had a status update on Twitter 23 hours 51 minutes ago

City of London Corporation provides Square Mile schoolchildren with food vouchers during half term break:… https://t.co/QilxKc8yaD
View Original Tweet

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.

Podcasts

We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.

Events

FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page