Tax incentives

12th May 2006 at 01:00
I am increasingly frustrated by a lack of truly "dramatic" initiatives in FE. Why can't we have colleges that are not just in partnership with schools and businesses but are one contiguous structure? I read this week about a college that has taken over a local school with plans to offer vocational, academic differentiation at 14. Great idea. Why can't every college be like that? And what about large tax incentives for the employer to offset the cost of apprenticeships?

Interestingly, the type of system you talk about reflects the educational structure of a number of our European neighbours - the same ones we are trying to compete with economically. In Italy, for example, the scuola media (a comprehensive middle school) offers three years general education before pupils enter either a technical school or the liceo classico.

It is worth considering that a similar system here may bring about the pay parity and equal teaching status that remains such a prickly issue between the two sectors. It would also obviate the need for a diploma and build the reputation of vocational pathways.

As for employers, how much influence they should be allowed to exert and to what extent they should become involved in assessment, remain points of contention. Certainly, employers are aware that sooner rather than later they will need to refresh their skilled work force; Gieves and Hawkes in Savile Row have been prepared to invest pound;80,000 per apprentice, so apparent is the looming crisis in trained tailors.

Whether Newham College of FE, that is providing the sartorial skills for Gieves and Hawkes, are permitted to insert their college identity in the shop window remains to be seen. Better still, will it mean a new suit for the principal?

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