Apprenticeships part of the ‘new norm’


During National Apprenticeship Week, Sir Alan has supported the Prime Minister’s vision for it to become the new norm for young people either to go to university or start an apprenticeship.

Across the Saffron Walden constituency 660 people started apprenticeships in the academic year 2011-12, and another 210 have started in the first quarter of this academic year. This is a percentage increase of 78% compared to the previous Labour Government’s last year in office.

This comes as the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) have released a forecast which shows that apprenticeships completed over the next decade could contribute productivity gains worth up to £3.4 billion a year to the economy by 2022.

Sir Alan commented:

“The Government is investing in apprenticeships to ensure that the country has the skills it needs to compete in the world and people across Essex are benefiting from this. Apprenticeships are a win for the individual and a win for business.

“National Apprenticeship Week provides a great opportunity to celebrate the positive impact that apprenticeships have on individuals, businesses and the economy both locally and nationally.”

Prime Minister David Cameron said:

“Apprenticeships are at the heart of our mission to rebuild the economy, giving young people the chance to learn a trade, to build their careers, and create a truly world-class, high-skilled workforce that can compete and thrive in the fierce global race we are in.

“There are record numbers of people taking up an apprenticeship, with a million starting one in the last few years. Our drive to reform and strengthen apprenticeships by raising standards and making them more rigorous and responsive to the needs of employers means that an apprenticeship is increasingly seen as a first choice career move.

“But we need to challenge ourselves to go even further - that is why I want it to be the new norm for young people either to go to university or into an apprenticeship. We need to look at how we can expand apprenticeship opportunities so that they are available to all young people who are ready and eager to take them up, and aspire to get ahead in life.”