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New survey calls for Government investment in high-quality skills for young people

Almost three-quarters of people want Prime Minister Boris Johnson to invest in high-quality skills, apprenticeships and vocational education for young people to help Britain’s economy recover from the Covid-19 downturn and thrive post Brexit, our new poll reveals today.

Monday, 12 Oct 2020

We commissioned the survey from Censuswide and it follows the Prime Minister’s announcement that he will commit £1.5 billion to adult further education (FE) and college facilities, and comes ahead of the long-awaited Further Education White Paper and the Government’s Spending Review.

The survey also confirmed that:

• 72% of respondents believe that ensuring young people have access to high-quality skills, apprenticeships and vocational education qualifications will be a vital part of the UK’s economy as it recovers from the impact of Covid-19

• 71% of respondents believe that ensuring young people have access to high-quality skills, apprenticeships and vocational education qualifications will be a vital part of the UK’s economy post-Brexit

• 68% of people surveyed believe that the Government should make skills, apprenticeships, and vocational education a top priority in its upcoming Spending Review

Commenting on the survey results, Dr Neil Bentley-Gockmann OBE, CEO of WorldSkills UK, said:
“These survey results underline the wide public support for high-quality, technical education pathways - helping the next generation forge successful careers and giving employers access to the skilled workforces they need. As we build a skills-led economic recovery from Covid, we must focus on excellence, not just competence, and ensure that we develop a first-class skills system for young people and their employers.

“Higher standards in technical education and apprenticeships not only boost prestige but also help create jobs, fuel productivity and encourage overseas investment. The best way to power our post-Covid recovery is to invest in high-quality skills development which are accessible to everyone, regardless of age or background.

“The Prime Minister’s recent announcements on funding for adult FE and Skills were very encouraging, especially during such a challenging time for not just further education, but the economy as a whole. It is vitally important that we develop a skills system that delivers for all age groups, and tackles vocational snobbery head on using international best practice to deliver the highest standards in technical education. We look forward to seeing more of the Government’s plans on this front through the forthcoming FE White Paper and beyond.”

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