Four young people have come together to form a campaign group for apprentices.
The group will call for improved quality apprenticeships for all – and is known as the Apprentice Voice (TAV).
Katie Fiddaman, 19, Dexter Hutchings, 20, Niamh Mulhall, 19, and Reece Simwogerere, 23, founded TAV to create a platform for apprentices to have their voices heard by decision-makers.
Dexter's story: 'I hated school and couldn’t wait to leave'
Background: Meet the Inspiring Apprentices
The group will carry out research and lobby on behalf of all apprentices. Its founders have chosen four key issues as their initial focus:
- How to ensure employers meet their obligation to allow 20 per cent off-the-job training.
- The cost of travel for young apprentices who aren’t paid the national minimum wage.
- Challenging preconceptions about apprenticeships and stereotypical views of apprentices.
- The lack of opportunity for apprentices to meet informally, develop social networks and share their experiences.
The group said most young people don’t know what a great opportunity an apprenticeship can be, adding: “When you’re at school, it’s actually quite hard to get information about apprenticeships because careers advisers and teachers tend to push you towards A levels and university. We want to challenge the biased notions that all apprentices wear overalls and for apprenticeships to be recognised as a viable and valuable learning route for people interested in all sorts of careers.
“Part of that is ensuring that employers and training providers are working together to ensure their apprenticeship offer is of a high enough quality."
Apprentices have until 31 July 2019 to take part in the group's first survey, which can be found here.