Provisional statistics revealed today show that more people than ever are doing an apprenticeship, with strong growth in the number of higher apprenticeships.
According to the figures, more than 872,000 people were employed on government-funded apprenticeships during the 2014-15 academic year, with almost 30,000 people working to gain the high value skills British businesses need via higher and degree apprenticeships.
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Skills Minister Nick Boles commented: “Our apprenticeship reforms are helping to build the modern highly skilled workforce British businesses need.
“We are committed to delivering 3 million apprenticeships by 2020 because that means more opportunities for our young people, more growth for our businesses.
“Through protecting apprenticeship quality, reforming funding and working with top universities to launch new degree apprenticeships, we are making sure apprenticeships deliver for individuals, businesses and the economy.”
The Government reforms will ensure that every big company plays their part in developing the next generation of skilled workers and put an end to low quality apprenticeship courses.
Reforms include the introduction of an apprenticeship levy to increase investment in apprenticeships, protecting the term ‘apprenticeship’ in law and ensuring large value government procurement contracts have a commitment to hire apprentices.
An apprenticeship delivers high returns to the economy, with £26-28 being returned for every £1 of Government investment.
The statistics also show that 2.38m apprenticeships were delivered in the past parliament. The Government is now committed to the ambitious target of delivering 3m apprenticeships by 2020.
The provisional figures further reveal that 19,200 people started a traineeship in the last academic year, a strong increase over the previous year. Traineeships provide the experience and work skills to progress into an apprenticeship or other job.