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Apprenticeships shouldn't be focused on those wanting to go to university, says AoC

29 May 2024


Julian Gravatt, Deputy Chief Executive, Association of Colleges, said:

“We welcome the target of 100,000 extra apprenticeships, but there are questions about this proposal from the Prime Minister.

“There is no cap on higher education, so if you shut down some courses which the government deems to be low quality, students may simply take a different degree-level course. It’s therefore hard to see how that saving would transfer to apprenticeships.

“Any future government must focus its efforts on apprenticeships for young people and those who are disadvantaged who are entering the labour market, rather than those who are wanting to complete a degree. Our report, 100% Opportunity: the case for a tertiary education system, showed that the introduction of the levy has resulted in perverse outcomes, with fewer young people and less focus on those from disadvantaged households completing an apprenticeship, while more money is spent on people already in good jobs.

“Urgent reform of the apprenticeship levy, ensuring that at least half of the levy should be spent on apprenticeships for new job starters and entry level jobs, would lead to more young people across the country completing an apprenticeship.”

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