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John Hayes announces new measures to improve Apprenticeships

Skills Minister John Hayes has announced a number of new measures to boost the quality of Apprenticeship provision during a debate yesterday at the House of Commons.

According to Hayes, the new steps will ensure that every Apprenticeship will deliver world class training for learners and businesses.

“Putting Apprenticeships back at the heart of our education and skills system is one of the Government’s proudest achievements, with record investment paying dividends for businesses and trainees,” he said.

“With more employers and more apprentices involved in the programme than ever before, we will continue to raise standards and ensure the high quality of every Apprenticeship.”

The measures include:

All 16-18 Apprenticeships to last for at least 12 months: for those aged 16-18 this 12 months period will be a minimum from August 2012. The National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) will also look at whether this requirement should extend to older apprentices.

Tighter guidance for those developing apprenticeship frameworks: to ensure national quality standards are always met NAS will take action to improve any frameworks that are not delivering relevant and challenging new skills.

NAS to work in partnership with the Skills Funding Agency to clampdown on poor use of provision: contracts will be tightened to allow for public funding to be immediately withdrawn from training providers who fail to meet quality standards

Commenting on the measures announced, Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “These measures will ensure that we cut no corners on quality. The Apprenticeships programme is a success story, with record numbers of learners starting an apprenticeship this year.

“All Apprenticeships will be consistently delivered to a high standard, we will crack down on poor provision and ultimately withdraw funds from those providers that can not improve.”

Aastha Gill

(Pictured: Skills Minister John Hayes)

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