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Apprenticeships - why Labour are wrong to scrap the Intermediate Apprenticeship

The Deregulation Bill is called as "Christmas Tree Bill". That is because it has lots of different baubles attached to it from a legislative basis. I happen to have been on the pre-legislative scrutiny committee for this as well as the regulatory reform select committee. In fact a lot of the issues in the Bill are both interesting and important.

Yesterday, for example, there was a discussion about Apprenticeships. These are important as they are a good route into work for young people. There has been a big growth in apprenticeships under this government. Labour have been critical because many of the apprenticeships are at NVQ level 2 rather than level 3 or 4. In fact about 60% are at level 2.

Labour, therefore, proposed an amendment to the bill to ban apprenticeships that are level 2 (ie scrap the Intermediate one, the Advanced one is Level 3 and the Higher one level 4).

I will hunt up the record of the debate from yesterday when it is published. However, I think that is wrong. It is not a bad idea to do what we can to increase the standards. However, there are over half a million young people on Intermediate Apprenticeships. Scrapping this type of apprenticeship is not something that seems to have merit to me.

It would be better to simply aim to increase the quality and skills involved without excluding people from the process.

The debate is here

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