From education to employment

School pupils receive NVQ Awards in pilot Apprenticeship scheme

Ten school pupils are celebrating passing the first stage of a pioneering programme that gives them a chance to start their careers.

The 14 to 16-year-olds from Lilian Baylis Technology School, Kennington, have received National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) in skills for the hospitality industry as part of pilot Apprenticeships for school pupils.

Parents, employers, teachers and trainers joined the pupils at a certificate-giving ceremony today, at St Giles Hotel, Bedford Avenue in London

The pilot Young Apprenticeships aim to broaden pupils” pathways into careers by offering them high quality, vocational skills and work experience as well as academic courses.

The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) teamed up with HIT Training, the training provider specialising in hospitality, and Westminster Kingsway College, to bring about the innovative programme.

Adele Oxberry of HIT Training, commented: “The pupils deserve congratulations for what they”ve achieved and I”m sure that their parents can be proud of them.

“Employers and teachers are saying how this programme has made a big difference to their attitudes and maturity in comparison with other pupils. And the pupils themselves are saying how much they”ve benefited from it.”

The pupils spend two days a week doing vocational training and work experience at St Giles Hotel. They have just completed their first year and after their second year will complete NVQ Level 2 or diplomas in professional cookery, food hygiene, health and safety and other subjects.

They are among 350 pupils from 5 schools involved in the Young Apprenticeship programme managed by LSC in London’s inner city boroughs. It is in its third year and the LSC is working towards rolling it out across the country in the future.

Sean McMahon, 14-19 Director at London LSC said: “We”re pleased with the pilot and with what’s happening here because it will help change the notion that vocational study can”t be for high ability pupils.

“We want schools to be able to offer pupils with high ability Young Apprenticeship programmes as well as traditional academic subjects. These programmes will give pupils the choice to either continue academic study or go into work. And it’s been shown that people who start at a company as an apprentice often end up as senior managers there.

“So, not only will this training help young people gain more control over their future, it will also help businesses and organisation become more productive and help the growth of London’s economy. It’s a win-win-win situation.”

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