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Welfare Reform on the Web (May 2000): Education - UK - Training

BLUE-COLLAR DEGREES FOR STUDENTS WHO MISS OUT

J. Clare

Daily Telegraph, Feb. 16th 2000, p.7 + 26

Announces plans for a new qualification to be known as a foundation degree designed to train technicians for the labour market. The two-year courses will be devised partly by employers, taught largely in further education colleges and involve a significant element of 'on the job' training.

(See also Times, Feb. 15th 2000, p.29)

COLLEGE LECTURERS WILL BE TESTED IN TEACHING SKILLS

B. Russell

Independent, Feb. 11th 2000, p.10

Under proposals aimed at improving teaching standards in further education colleges, full-time teaching staff who do not hold a teaching qualification will have to pass a special certificate of education within three years. Part-timers will have to gain a lower level qualification.

LEARNING AND SKILLS COUNCILS

D. Boyer

Working Brief, no.111, 2000, p.16-17

At the heart of government proposals for past-16 education lie the national Learning and Skills Council and its 47 local branches. The system will be heavily centralised with local LSCs having little room for manoeuvre. There is likely to be tension between national and local priorities and the interests of trainees and employers. Sixth forms will continue to be funded by local education authorities, but these will in future get their money from the LSC. The need for future LEA involvement is questionable. Most work-based training will be delivered by single contracts between providers and LSCs.

LESSONS FOR THE LEADERS

K. Wilson

Municipal Journal, Mar. 3rd-9th 2000, p.18

Local authorities are well placed to help the government implement its lifelong learning programme through:

  • provision of adult and community education classes:
  • the integration of adult learning with housing and social services to put opportunities in the way of potential students.

OVERHAUL FOR SKILLS PROGRAMME

J. Kelly

Financial Times, Feb. 17th 2000, p.4

Outlines reforms of the vocational training system which include the re-launch of GNVQs as vocational A-levels, the replacement of national traineeships with Foundation Modern Apprenticeships, and the establishment of work-based Foundation Degrees.

TACKLING THE ADULT SKILLS GAP: UPSKILLING ADULTS AND THE ROLE OF WORKPLACE LEARNING

National Skills Task Force

Sudbury: Prolog, 2000-03-22

Recommends:

  • that training costs should be split between individuals, employers, trade unions and the government;
  • publicly funded training up to level 2;
  • income dependent loans for adults pursuing recognised qualifications;
  • annual workplace training audit by DfEE;
  • encouragement of informal learning and accreditation of prior learning;
  • new learning networks for SMEs to pool learning resources;
  • tax credit for small firms with Investors in People;
  • training information service for employers;
  • Small Business Service to promote best practice in small firms.

(For comment see Working Brief, no.111, 2000, p.14-15)

UK FAILS TO PROVIDE PATH FROM SCHOOL TO WORK

M. Atkinson and L. Elliott

Guardian, Feb. 11th 2000, p.6

Reports findings of a confidential OECD report which show that, of 14 countries studied in depth, only Hungary and Portugal have a record as poor as the UK's in smoothing the transition from school to work. Results of the 1996 study show that more than 25% of young people who stayed on at school after the end of compulsory education dropped out within a year, and 40% of those aged between 19 and 24 had not reached what the OECD considered to be a minimum level of qualification. The report criticised the private sector-led system for delivering vocational training, saying that there was evidence of providers being overpaid for doing little. Moreover, the payments by results system encouraged providers to focus on maximising the number of lower level qualifications. There were also a confusing plethora of competing bodies delivering vocational training, including local education authorities, TECs, further education colleges, job centres and local regeneration partnerships.

VOCATIONAL COURSES TO BE OFFERED AS A-LEVELS

B. Russell

Independent, Feb. 17th 2000, p.11

Announces the introduction of A levels in vocational subjects such as tourism and retailing from September 2000 to replace GNVQs.

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