Ray Walker Business Executive Director – Local Authorities, Community and School Development Birmingham Metropolitan College The Role of Further Education in the Development of Skills and Economic Growth Challenge set down by government: • “ Skills for Sustainable Growth” • “Investing in Skills for Sustainable Growth” • “New Challenges, New Changes” • Promote Adult Skills. • High Quality Teaching and learning • Free Colleges/Providers from bureaucracy to enable better response to local needs/communities. • Better investment in skills between the taxpayer, learner and employer. Apprenticeships: • Significant increases in the number of apprenticeships in the region. • Greater increase in youth apprenticeships as well as adult apprenticeships. • Government funding for 250,000 more apprenticeships over the next four years. • More High level Apprenticeships. • Apprenticeship Training Associations/Agencies (ATAs) and Group Training Associations/Agencies (GTAs). Adult Skills Budget- Provision for the unemployed: • Meet the needs of those claiming JSA and ESA in Work Related Activity Group. • Referral via Jobcentre Plus • Provision appropriate to learner and employer needs. • Job Outcome Incentive Payments. Skills Conditionality: • Skills training a condition of continued receipt of benefit. • Benefit sanction for non participants Colleges and Training Providers to support Service Academies: • Combining work placements with preemployment training. • Guaranteed Interviews with employers. Key Developments to support growth via skills development: • Review of funding. • Lifelong Learning Accounts Launch. • Development of new industry – led professional standard schemes – ensuring qualifications are valued and are of high quality. • £210 million /year protection of informal Adult Community Learning. • Fully funded provision for the low skilled, young people and jobseekers. • Government backed loans for first time in FE for learners aged 24+. • Upfront cost of training not being a barrier to following learning and skills. Growth and Innovation fund: • £50 million / year. • Pump prime and pilot selected projects, build leadership and management skills in SMEs. What else needs to be done? • Greater integration of the pre 19 and post 19 activity to address skills and employability. • Young NEETs can and often do become older NEETs/long term unemployed. • Addressing the skills and employment agenda much earlier with young people. • Wolf Report – more appropriate vocational learning for young people. • Following vocational qualifications that are recognised by employers. • High quality Internships –a real engagement with the world of work. • New structural arrangements to deliver education and training. • Continued focus on functional skills and employability skills. • Differentiated approach for specific disadvantaged groups. • Programmes that integrate “wrap around” support with good teaching and skills delivery.