Policy Update

17 May – Queens Speech to open Parliament – “Education for all” Bill & Apprenticeships mention (AELP Countdown 772) – see notes here – page 34

  • The Queen introduced the “Education for All” Bill (which had been trailed originally as a Skills Bill).
  •  Mention is also made in accompanying notes of a forthcoming Skills Plan which will take forward the Sainsbury Review’s recommendations on technical and Professional Education when they are published

17 May – This month’s unemployment/NEET statistics remains consistent – ONS UK Labour Market Bulletin – Read here

  • May figures show that although the overall trend over the last few years is downwards, the pace of reduction has slowed
  • AELP Analysis: The number of unemployed has been stuck at around 1.6 million since early autumn last year, and currently 5.1% of the working age population are unemployed
  • The number of young people who are NEET (not in employment, education or training) follows a similar trend over time: what were rapid post-recession declines have now slowed virtually to a halt.  For the three months from February to April 2016, 13.7% of 16-24 year olds are unemployed.
  •  Around a third of these were seeking work while in full time education
  • Four out of every five NEETs are over-18, only one in five are 16 or 17 years old

17 May – MOJ Accepts Prison Education Review (Coates Review) Recommendations – see Press release and link to full report here

Key Points below:

  • Governors to be given complete control of the education budget and freedom to tailor the prison curriculum – giving offenders the skills they need to find work on release and close the door on destructive 2ersonal;
  • Every single prisoner to receive a 2ersonalized learning plan – improving the life chances of thousands of prisoners and reducing the likelihood they return to crime;
  • New fast-track training scheme to attract top-quality graduates to the prison system – helping inspire learners and supporting prisons to deliver high-quality education.
  • Current OLASS arrangements will remain until August 2017 to allow time for implementation
  • See Michael Gove’s recent speech on Prison Reform on 12 May here

25 May – Government announces second wave of apprenticeship frameworks to be switched off this year – FE Week read here

  • 60 further apprenticeship frameworks are to be switched in December 2016 as part of the continuing migration to new apprenticeship standards
  • See full list at above link

27 May – Cabinet Office opens consultation on new policy directions for the Big Lottery Fund – see here

  • According to the Cabinet, consultation is required to amend Policy direction as: “Existing policy directions for the Fund’s distribution of money in England and for UK-wide programmes have not been revised since 2012 and now need to be updated”
  • “Since 2012 there has been a change of Government and the Fund has also published a new Strategic Framework, after its own extensive public consultation throughout 2014”
  • Consultation period ends on August 12 2016

3 June – SFA Forced to admit that progressions to Apprenticeships from Traineeships are less than positive (FE Week) see link here

  • According to FE Week – The government has admitted that fewer than one in ten 19- to 24-year-olds who complete a traineeship course move on to start an apprenticeship
  • The figures showed that 450 (nine per cent) of 5,200 completions for 19- to 24-year-olds in 2014/15 started an apprenticeship.
  • The figure was slightly higher for under-19s — with 2,280 (31 per cent) of 7,400 completions progressing —overall progression across both groups to apprenticeships stands at 22 per cent

3 June – David Hughes to become new CEO of association of Colleges (AELP Countdown 774)

  • David Hughes, currently chief executive of the Learning and Work Institute, is to take over the reins as the new CEO of the Association of Colleges when Martin Doel steps down in September