But it seems the noble occupation of being Santa has yet to attract priority funding, despite the new focus on vocational training for adults.
Weston FE college in Somerset is offering a Father Christmas course just in case the big man himself doesn't make it down to the West Country this year. But there will be a fee, of pound;42, and applicants will have to hope the necessary police checks prove a bit faster than those for some school teachers if they want to be in business in time to catch the Christmas shoppers.
But what should the training standards for Santas be? And how big is the skills gap? About time the Sector Skills Development Agency commissioned some research.
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