Ethnic trade route

1st April 2005 at 01:00
A college is taking employers to Pakistan to encourage them to take on more ethnic minority apprentices.

City College Birmingham launched the project after concern at low numbers of minority ethnic learners taking up apprenticeships in certain trades.

The college has links with Jamaica and Pakistan - the countries of heritage of Birmingham's largest communities.

In a recent inspection, Ofsted described City College's performance in equal opportunities, diversity and inclusion as "outstanding". The college has growing numbers of ethnic minority 16 to 18-year-olds on full-time foundation level motor vehicle courses, but few are taking the work-based learning route. Eighty three per cent of motor vehicle apprentices attending through private training providers are white, as are 96 per cent of apprentice electricians.

"The profile of apprenticeships was shocking," said vice-principal Sue Knottenbelt. "Those industries are predominantly white in a city that's not predominantly white. We are now working with employers to open up opportunities for our students to access apprenticeships."

City College began its international links, including sending staff overseas, in the late 1980s in response to demand for courses from visiting relatives of its ethnic minority learners, bringing a big growth in overseas students. The college has built partnerships in the United States, Europe, Gambia and South Africa and is fostering links with India.

"Our activity is having a huge impact on our ability to respond to our communities," says Ms Knottenbelt. "We have found a powerful tool for our organisation and staff development."

If you have an innovative link, email us on: Make_the_Link@tes.co.ukwww.tes.co.ukMake_the_Link

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now