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In response to the new Education White Paper, Lisa Capper, Director of Education & Skills, commented: “For many young people, traditional educational pathways just don’t work, so we are pleased that the role of independent training providers is recognised in today’s announcement in delivering apprenticeships, but importantly also through their valuable role in delivering Study Programmes, adult education and other forms of training.

“Independent providers often reach the gaps that the larger colleges cannot reach and, accordingly, must be part of any Local Skills Plan. There needs to be recognition that getting people into work isn’t solely about upskilling people – though this is absolutely vital – but is also about ensuring that we are reaching the most vulnerable cohorts who have fallen out of mainstream education through no fault of their own.

“For some young people and adults, the leap to level 3 qualifications is too far and, if we are serious about levelling up, there has to be an inclusive and incremental route on the basics, and skills and knowledge acquisition, along with a focus on other level 3 qualifications, not just T-levels.

“As a leading independent provider of post-16 education, we know that levelling up will require more flexible funding structures to take into account the varying pathways of learners, thereby guaranteeing that all young people – no matter their circumstances – get the skills they need to move on with their lives.”

The ‘Skills for Jobs’ White Paper sets out reforms to post-16 technical education and training. Find it here.