Apprenticeships must lead to 'secure, well-paid jobs', insists NUS

10th March 2016 at 17:46
apprenticeships secure, well-paid jobs shakira martin nus

The government must take action to ensure all apprentices can move into "secure, well-paid jobs" after finishing their training, the NUS students' union has said.

The comments came after skills minister Nick Boles told the House of Commons today that the government wanted to give all young people the chance to make the most of their talents and create a better life for themselves.

“That’s exactly why we are committed to creating 3 million apprenticeships by 2020," he said. "Businesses and colleges should be congratulated for helping apprenticeships move from strength to strength. I am hugely proud of the success we have achieved together and look forward to even more young people getting the chance to work hard and get on.”

According to the government, the number of people starting higher apprenticeships in England reached 19,800 in 2014-15 – an increase of 115 per cent on the previous year. It has also said that through the apprenticeship levy, it will be doubling the annual level of spending on apprenticeships in cash terms between 2010 to-2011 and 2019- 2020 to £2.5 billion.

While the apprenticeship levy will only be paid by employers with a payroll bill of £3 million or more, Mr Boles stressed to MPs that small- and medium-sied enterprises (SMEs) would be eligible for any unspent funding generated by the levy which is not used by the marger firms. “We do not anticipate that all companies who pay the levy will use up all of their money in their digital accounts, and there will be a great deal more money to go around, so we are absolutely determined that the level of apprenticeships provided by small- and medium-sized enterprises will continue as now," he said.

The NUS said that while it was pleased to see apprenticeships recognised as a pathway for young people, more had to be done to ensure that apprentices had a successful career ahead of them. Vice-president for further education Shakira Martin said: “Three million new apprentices is all very well and good, but we want to hear the government’s plans for three million secure, well-paid jobs to follow them up.”

Want to keep up with the latest education news and opinion? Follow TES FE News on Twitter, like us on Facebook and follow us on LinkedIn 


Related Content

Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today