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Blog posted on 29th November 2016 by Angie Forster
Apprenticeships are a hot topic of late, and in the light of the proposed apprenticeship levy kicking in next year, we wanted to share our opinion on just how valuable we believe work-based qualifications like this are.
The government are proposing to make a concsious effort to make it possible for companies to invest in apprenticeships before 2020. This is in a bid to train three million youngsters into work, addressing the decrease in the focus on employee based training outside education. This means that more than £60 million is to be invested in training for apprentices from the poorest areas in the country; additional funding will be provided to employers that take on 16-18 year olds and 19-24 year olds who were in, or who have special educational needs; and an extra 20 per cent of funding to providers to train 16-18 year-olds.
Like most businesses in the UK, we are excited about this new iniative, having already invested in, and with plans to invest further in apprenticeships over the coming years.
In the past few months, we have taken on a hard-working and conscientious apprenticeship to join our team in the workshop. Starting at Playscheme at the beginning of September, Matt Price joined us on a placement as part of his course at Selby York College, where he spends one day a week with us.
He is currently undertaking a Level 2 Joinery Apprenticeship which will last two years, where he will be learning both at college, and with us on site to gain valuable insight and familiarise himself with the industry in a more hands-on approach.
Building a realtionship with York Selby College and many others in our region, we were lucky to meet Marin Kennedy, a Business Engagement Officer for Apprenticeships and Skills, who has helped us to plan and communiacte its first apprenticeship scheme, which we are delighted to be a part of.
Martin put us in contact with various colleges in the area including with Darron Piercy at Selby College, who kindly came to visit us at our workshop earlier this year. Darron then helped us to identify the right course that was in line with our business and industry, and provided us with a shortlist of potential applicants that we could interview.
Matt is currently working with the manufacturing team in all aspects of the fabrication, including building, of our bespoke play equipment, as well as sports and themed environments with the view to joining the team on a permanent basis upon completion of his apprenticeship course at college.
All of our workshop staff are enjoying having Matt on board with us, sharing their wisdom, knowledge and on-the-job experience. Guiding him through our processes and building up his confidence and skills to the highest standard in the job, while also developing his chances of solidifying a real career in this industry.
Speaking to Matt about his time with us so far, he is really enjoying working with wood and shares a great eye for detail when working on projects with our workshop team; seeing things from a new perspective and with fresh eyes. Showing plenty o enthusiasm at work, together with the willingness to learn and gain more skills on a daily basis, we see huge potential in Matt and are keen for him to get more involved with the team in the future.
We at Playscheme see a huge benefit in investing in young, local talent, as it not only helps the business, but it also helps to catapult them into their chosen careers. We believe that work experience is extremely beneficial in a young person’s transition from college to work life. Going for your first job after finishing education can be sometimes be terrifying for those who aren't prepared, so an apprenticeship can help do just this.