From education to employment

Wood Report – Pledge to review and simplify employability support

The Scottish Government will work with businesses and young people to review the range of support available to train and employ young people in an early response to the findings of the Commission on Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce.

The Commission chaired by Sir Ian Wood published its final report “Education Working For All!” earlier this month. Cabinet Secretary for Training Youth and Women’s Employment Angela Constance will set out the Government’s initial response to the report’s 39 recommendations and a proposed target to reduce the proportion of young unemployed people by 40 per cent by 2020 in a Parliamentary statement this week.

Businesses seeking to recruit and train young people are able to receive public sector support from a range of sources.

Ahead of the Government’s response to the Wood Report, Ms Constance said:

“The Scottish Government shares the scale of ambition set out in Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce.

“And we have not waited for the Commission’s final report to take action. We have already made £12 million available to fund early responses to the Commission’s findings.

“We are already providing support through Opportunities for All, through Community Jobs Scotland and a range of Employer Recruitment Incentives. We are further expanding our highly successful Modern Apprenticeship programme which has supported 77,000 people with job based training over three years, increasing the annual target to 30,000.

“More and more businesses are recognising that a skilled and diverse young workforce is key to their long term success, but we recognise the concerns raised by the business community that the support landscape is complex and needs to be clearly signposted.

“The system of support has grown over time in response to a range of circumstances and needs. We will continue to make sure that our interventions are relevant to the current economic climate and that we support our businesses ambitions to invest and to grow.

“It is entirely appropriate that support recognises local labour market conditions and local government has a key role to play in boosting youth employment. We will continue to work with local government and partners to ensure that our interventions add value and offer a clear picture of the support that is available to help our businesses to grow.

“However we will review the support available to business and identify opportunities to focus that support in a way that puts businesses and young people, working with them to design support that meets their needs.”

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