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25th April 2014 at 01:00

Look beyond labels for modern apprentices

We are delighted to note the proposed expansion of the Modern Apprenticeship programme by the Scottish government from the current 25,000 starts a year to 30,000 by 2020, as was announced last week.

During challenging economic times it is the vulnerable who suffer the most and we have a collective responsibility as a society to give them the chance to realise their full potential. Apprenticeship programmes provide the opportunity to do just this and at the same time help businesses to thrive, especially in sectors where we are currently facing a skills shortage.

One key group adversely affected by challenging economic circumstances is that of young people with additional support needs (ASN). In this context we welcome the constructive relationship we have developed with the Scottish government to work together to boost the number of people with ASN in employment. The rewards of getting these young people, many of whom boast excellent skills, into work are well worth it, with higher loyalty and retention rates.

We would urge Scotland's employers to look beyond the ASN label when taking on a modern apprentice and to take advantage of the recruitment incentives on offer.

The Scottish Children's Services Coalition comprising: Tom McGhee, managing director, Spark of Genius; Duncan Dunlop, chief executive, Who Cares? Scotland; Stuart Jacob, director, Falkland House School; Sophie Dow, founder, Mindroom; Niall Kelly, managing director, Young Foundations

Short and tweet

Larry [Flanagan] apologizes for 1 of Scotland's poorest exports - Michael Gove. @EISUnion #NUT2014


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"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." Albert Einstein.


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