A major campaign led by The Journal and Evening Gazette is aiming to boost the number of firms taking on apprentices in the North East. And, as Karen McLauchlan reports, it’s already a huge success.
Just a few success stories from the campaign so far
AN initiative to recruit new apprentices for ‘green’ training places has been launched. The North East Apprenticeship Company (NEAC) is looking for young apprentices for employment in the environmental sector.
A DOCTOR’S surgery in Sunderland is offering a host of new services to patients after putting two of its receptionists through a healthcare apprenticeship. Lynn Hutchinson and Emma Keerie at the Happy House Surgery on Durham Road are now fully functioning healthcare assistants after becoming apprentices through Gateshead Council’s bespoke service.
A TEENAGER who has been helping to carry out a major North East regeneration project has been honoured for his commitment and dedication. Aaron Leonard from Gateshead has been handed the Apprentice of the Year Award by community regeneration specialist Frank Haslam Milan (FHM) North East.
TYNESIDE MP Catherine McKinnell, Labour MP for Newcastle North, has recruited her own apprentice – and has urged others to do the same. Sixteen-year-old Charlene Curry is now working in the constituency office in Westerhope, Newcastle, where she will complete a business administration qualification.
A TRAINEE female mechanic for the police is proving her worth in a male-dominated industry and is urging other women to pick up a wrench and take up an apprenticeship in the motor industry. Carly Willumsen, from Newcastle, enrolled at Gateshead College and is well under way with her two-year apprenticeship technician course at Northumbria Police Fleet Management at Killingworth, to become a full-time vehicle technician.
TRAINEE plumber Shane Lodge has a new career in the pipeline after becoming the 100th apprentice to join a thriving scheme. The 20-year-old from Eston took up a role with A&P Plumbing and Heating, of Normanby, thanks to the support of Redcar and Cleveland Council’s routes to employment team.
A SPECIALIST technology firm has bolstered its team by taking on its first apprentices. PolyPhotonix, which has its research plant at PETEC, NetPark in Sedgefield, is pioneering the development of organic light technology (OLED). It has taken on apprentices Josh Greg, 18, from Stockton and Sean Bolton, 19, from Middlesbrough.
A TEESSIDE teenager is looking forward to a digital future after the North East Apprenticeship Company (NEAC) secured an apprenticeship for him at a Teesside e-commerce website designer. Sixteen-year-old Alex Smith from Great Ayton has been taken on as an apprentice at Visualsoft, where he will be working at its busy Stockton office.
This excellent toolkit is a resource for union reps and ULRs who are negotiating with employers on Apprenticeships or who are approaching an employer to discuss the possibility of taking on apprentices. The factsheets provide concise information on a range of topics related to Apprenticeships.
Download full toolkit [PDF 1.6mb] go to:
Green Apprentices can bring real benefit to your business
Governments, business, industry and individuals are adapting in order to reduce their impact on the environment. In response to this, the ‘green’ jobs market is growing to accommodate the increased demand for environmental services.
To support these services, the NE Apprenticeship Company and Environmental Academy have developed the ‘Green Apprenticeship Scheme’. The starting cost to hire an apprentice is just £115 per week. We screen and select the right apprentice for your organisation and offer support along the way.
The starting cost of having an apprentice sourced and supported by us is £115 per week. This comprises of their salary plus a service charge to cover the management costs of employing and supporting the apprentice. In addition, we organise the latest training available from the Environmental Academy to equip the apprentice with the right environmental skills for the job. We can even arrange for your apprentice to be ‘shared’ across a number of organisations should you struggle to meet the ongoing costs.
To find out more about hiring an Apprentice please call Judith Jackson on 0191 490 4616.
Paul Champion NEAC CEO has been involved in the review of the REC Youth Employment Task Force at the House of Lords.
There are nearly one million young people who are not in education, employment or training in the UK. We know from previous recessions that significant periods of unemployment in the early years of a person’s working life can have serious consequences on their future job prospects. Gaps in employment can mean that young jobseekers do not acquire the skills and relevant work experience which employers are looking for. Furthermore, unemployment can seriously damage a young person’s confidence which can significantly hamper their career prospects throughout their working lives.
This is an issue which should concern us all. The direct cost of youth unemployment is substantial: the Prince’s Trust has put a figure at £4.7 billion a year after taking into account productivity loss and the cost of benefits. In addition, healthy businesses need healthy communities in which to operate. If a generation of young people is scarred by unemployment then this is not only damaging to Britain but poses a real threat to employers.
Employers and recruiters can play a crucial role in highlighting the skills and support mechanisms that are needed to build effective bridges for young people to go into the world of work. It is for this reason that the REC has established a Youth Employment Taskforce to provide practical advice to Government to tackle the problem.
The taskforce is chaired by Baroness Prosser, Deputy Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and involves high-profile employers, leading recruiters, including NEAC.
The aim is to provide feedback and practical recommendations to politicians and policy makers. Specific issues that are being addressed include identifying future sectors of growth, highlighting the skills and attitudes needed by young people to succeed at work and recommending the support young jobseekers need to be able to succeed in a competitive labour market.
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North East Apprenticeship Company
Tel: 0191 4902453
Mobile: 07540 704920
Fax: 0191 5800218
Location:Belvedere Rd,Lambeth,United Kingdom
NEAC going green…
Tel: 0191 4902453
Mobile: 07540 704920
Fax: 0191 5800218
We are looking for a group of young hopefuls to compete for an opportunity to gain a business administration apprenticeship level 2 with local employers.
This 6-week programme will enhance your skills to help you get hired. Working in a team, you will be able to win points for each weekly task you complete successfully.
To be eligible, you must live in Gateshead and be unwaged or unemployed. You must be committed to attend for the full 6 weeks and ready to learn new skills.
Your travel expenses will be paid for the duration of the 6-week programme.
The article below was on Sky News Online on Friday 4th March. Its talks about young people not being employebale and suggests that business should be involved in eductaion to ensure that young people have the skills to better suite the needs of employers.
It is very clear that young people need the help of employers, but also employers need the help of young people who are keen and capable ,to enable employers in meeting the future skill requirements of their businesses.
NEAC is passionate about ensuring young people get a fair chance in the job market via apprenticeships, so why not, as an employer, share the responsibility of our young people and their skills.
Tel: 0191 4902453
Young People ‘Lack Skills Needed For Jobs’
Mona Moussly, Sky News Online
Young people are less employable than they were 10 years ago because of a lack of skills due to poor education, a survey suggests.
The poll, by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), said 76% of executives agreed that failures in the education system were fuelling a skills crisis that was damaging the economy.
A high number of employers said they had encountered problems with young people’s discipline and punctuality (61%), workplace skills (63%) and attitude and ambition (66%).
Of the 600 managers surveyed,47% agreed that business involvement in the education process would improve the employability of young people.
But, when asked, fewer than half of them said they were currently working with a school in order to do so.
Ruth Spellman, chief executive of the CMI, said bad management was a serious issue in the UK with only one in five bosses professionally trained to be managers.
“The cycle has to be broken and the only way to do so is for schools and employers to work together.
“This is how students will learn to lead and the UK can develop the leadership skills needed to make Britain competitive.”
The Tomorrow’s Leaders survey was released to mark the launch of Campus CMI – a programme developed with employers to improve the management skills of young people.
From the BBC website 3/3/2011
Hundreds of thousands of young people are doing vocational courses which do not lead to university or a job, a report says.
A review commissioned by ministers recommends a radical shake-up of vocational education in England.
It says all pupils should study a core of academic subjects until they are 16.
And it calls for changes to the school league tables so some vocational qualifications are not counted.
At the moment, some qualifications count for the equivalent of four GCSEs.
The report says this, coupled with the funding arrangements, provide “perverse incentives” for students to be steered in to notching up strings of qualifications which may not help them in to work or higher education.
And this is at a time when young people are facing a very difficult labour market, it says.
The review has been carried out by Professor Alison Wolf, an expert in education and skills.
We’ve got more than half our 15-16 year olds failing to get get good maths and good English at GCSE the first time round and two years later it’s no better”
Professor Alison Wolf Author of review
Her report says: “The staple offer for between a quarter and a third of the post-16 cohort is a diet of low-level vocational qualifications, most of which have little to no labour market value.
“Among 16 to 19 year olds, the review estimates that at least 350,000 get little to no benefit from the post-16 education system.”
Her report says the current funding system encourages colleges to put students through a lot of qualifications – but not to continue to improve their core skills in English and maths if these are lacking.
It calls for changes to the system of funding and regulation, longer-term work placements for older pupils and greater involvement of business and industry.
At the same time, schools should no longer have a duty to provide work-related learning, including work experience, to all pupils over 14.
Prof Wolf says funding for pupils aged between 16 and 19 should be per student – not per qualification – as it is at the moment.
She believes children should study mainly academic subjects until they are 16 and that if they do not get a good GCSE in English and maths by that age, they should be made to continue with those subjects.
“We’ve got more than half our 15-16 year olds failing to get good maths and good English at GCSE the first time round and two years later it’s no better,” Prof Wolf told the BBC.
Until 16, she says, pupils should spend 80% of their time on core subjects.
Education Secretary Michael Gove said the government would reform the system: “The system that we have inherited is very damaging. It is unfair for children and it is harming the economy.
“Millions of children have been misled into pursuing courses which offer little hope.”
He said high-quality vocational courses were “immensely valuable”, giving access to “great education and great jobs”, and should be available to all children.
“We will reform league tables, the funding system, and regulation to give children honest information and access to the right courses,” he said.
“Britain desperately needs good practical technical vocational education”
The Wolf report calls for more high-quality apprenticeships for young people aged from 16 to 18.
Employers should be part-subsidised to offer such apprenticeships, Prof Wolf believes, if they offer wider training.
The report also says it should be made easier for teachers from further education colleges to teach in schools and that colleges should be allowed to take pupils from the age of 14.
We welcome the moves to improve collaboration between schools, FE and employers”
The government is already planning to open new University Technical Colleges, where pupils could go from the age of 14 to do work-based training and core academic lessons in English and maths.
Vocational qualifications taken in schools and colleges include Btecs, City and Guilds and OCR Nationals, and cover subjects ranging from IT and construction skills, to dance, hospitality and catering.
The bodies which provide them say they are keen to work with the government to implement the findings of the review.
A spokeswoman for Pearson, which provides the Btec qualification, said: “We were clear in our submission to Professor Wolf that we believe that any qualifications a young person takes must help them to progress in their lives.
“Research indicates that the value of our qualifications, like the Btec, is very strong in this respect.
“We welcome the moves to improve collaboration between schools, FE and employers to enable more learners to experience this.”
OCR said it wholeheartedly supported the findings of the Wolf review. A spokeswoman said: “The recommendations safeguard the interests of young people with measures that can support real progression, raise the quality of vocational provision and, crucially, secure core achievements in English and maths”.
Martin Doel, the chief executive of the Association of Colleges, said the difficulties facing young people in today’s labour market were not a reflection of the quality of vocational education per se, but were related to the state of the economy and “the challenges colleges and others face in picking up the pieces where pupils leave school with few or no qualifications”.
He said: “We welcome Professor Wolf’s recommendation that colleges can play a leading role in vocational education for students from the age of 14 and the recognition that lecturers in colleges have much expertise to offer young people.”
The National Union of Teachers says it is pleased the report recognises that it is essential pupils are not “herded into one type of education or another at far too young an age”.