The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) has commissioned the Centre for Excellence and Leadership (CEL) to support its National Employee Training Programme (NETP), due to launch in April 2006 to improve the prospects of the UK’s estimated 6 million low-skilled adults.
The CEL is a joint venture between Lancaster University and Ashridge business schools and the Learning and Skills Development Agency (LSDA). It will help training providers respond to employers” needs and take advantage of the £197 million funding offered by the NETP.
CEL Chief Executive Lynne Sedgmore commented: “Our focus will be on supporting training and skills sector leaders through organisational and culture change, and getting them to respond better to employers. Many service providers are already very flexible and responsive, but there’s more we can do.”
Incentive for Training Firms
So will this mean extra funding for training providers? Not directly, but because NETP gives money to employers who then choose the best training provider, there is a real incentive for training firms to understand their customers. NETP will be supported by around £197 million of funding between 2006 and 2008. It will give grants directly to employers for them to invest in improving the skills of their low and semi-skilled employees.
“Ultimately”, says Sedgemore, “our role is to help sector leaders to deliver against the targets in the National Employer Training Programme”. Before NETP goes live in April, her organisation will be producing good practice guides on how to engage employers and understand their needs, and will be supporting a range of local, regional and national employer / provider partnerships. It has already started discussions with sector providers and will be running a series of regional workshops over the next few months.
The Centre for Excellence and Leadership would like to hear from providers across the learning and skills sector about their approach and attitudes towards NETP and their expectations of the programme. Training providers wishing to take part in an online survey please click here.
What next for the NETP? Tell us in the FE Blog
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