Ahead of National Apprenticeship Week, Ministers today underlined the Coalition Government’s commitment to increase the budget for Apprenticeships to over £1,400 million in 2011-12, helping to create a new generation of skilled workers to drive economic growth.
This year the successful British Airways engineering apprenticeship scheme will take on 120 students, giving more students the opportunity to become full time employees of British Airways.
Ministers also praised UK firms including British Gas, Superdrug and Procter and Gamble, which between them will create thousands of new apprenticeship places this year. BT is offering 250 places across the Group, and Jaguar Land Rover will create 1,200 new Apprenticeship places, while this year 12,000 apprentices would complete their training at Morrison’s.
Calling on more firms to follow the lead of these employers, Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning Minister John Hayes said that the Government wanted business to deliver 100,000 more apprentices by 2014.
John Hayes said:
"Our ultimate goal remains to see apprentices achieve equivalent esteem and status with university graduates, so that a place on an apprenticeship scheme is as valued as one at a university.
"In government, I have sought to characterise our policy by its commitment to apprenticeships. In my role as Minister at the Department for Education, I will work with the National Apprenticeship Service to bring forward plans for graduation ceremonies for apprentices and their families, together with an apprentice honour roll.
"BIS and the National Apprenticeship Service will facilitate the creation of alumni network, mirroring those currently used by graduates."