From education to employment

AELP’s first ever green skills summit a success – but more work to be done to meet the climate change challenge

Jane Hickie

The Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) has pledged to redouble its efforts in tackling the challenges the skills sector faces from climate change, after hosting its first ever green skills summit.

Taking place at 15Hatfields in London on 3February, the summit was chaired by AELP board member Nichola Hay MBE. The event heard from a range of speakers including Skills Minister, Alex Burghart MP, and Jules Pipe, Deputy Mayor for London. However, the stars of the show were undoubtedly the four young learners who opened up about their motivations for starting careers in the green economy. Seray, Carys, Kofi and Ismail led an inspirational session by sharing their experiences of the sector – and urged employers and training providers to fill a leadership gap in tackling the challenges of climate change.

Following the event, AELP has pledged to work with employers, providers, and the government to ensure the FE sector is able to meet the challenges climate change will bring in the future. This work will include setting up a ‘task and finish’ group that will look at how to introduce a sustainability charter for Independent Training Providers. This code will enable providers to show that sustainability is at the heart of what they do.

Jane Hickie, AELP Chief Executive, said:

Green skills will be a vital part of meeting the challenges of climate change and in aiding our recovery from the effects of the Covid 19 pandemic. I was delighted that we heard from people across the sector at our first ever green skills summit at 15Hatfields, an impressive sustainable events venue in central London.

“The event was a great success, and so many attendees have given positive feedback – especially after hearing from the inspirational young people who talked to us about their careers in green skills and sustainability. However, there is no room for complacency and there’s a lot to think about following the summit.

“AELP will be going straight to work on how we can support learners, providers and employers in the transition to a green economy. This starts with setting up a group to look at how a sustainability charter can ensure learners know providers take their environmental impact seriously.

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