CBI calls for improvement of Modern Appreticeships

CBI calls for improvement of Modern Apprenticeships as survey finds most trainees `unwilling or incapable’

The government’s Modern Apprenticeships scheme is badly in need of reform to improve the quality of training and cut the drop-out rate, according to a report by the Confederation of British Industry.

Most of the young people attracted to the scheme are either unsuitable or unwilling to complete it, the survey found.

Fifty-five per cent of employers taking part in the survey felt their apprentice was not capable of completing the apprenticeship, while 30% said their candidate did not want to finish the scheme.

The research was undertaken in response to last year’s figures compiled by the Department for Education and Employment, which revealed that only 32% of young people had completed their training to NVQ Level 3.

Cormac Bakewell, policy adviser at the CBI, said the results were a serious cause for concern. `Modern Apprenticeships are a very important part of vocational training for young people and it is important that the programme delivers,’ he said.

The survey also revealed a stigma attached to vocational education and training in the UK, arising from the notion, encouraged in schools, that academic qualifications are superior to vocational qualifications. This is made worse by poor careers advice, Bakewell said.

`Careers advice between 14 and 16 years of age is patchy, and the quality of advice certainly needs to be built up,’ he added.

Firms offering MA places get government funding to towards training costs.

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