Please find below an open letter published today (13 Jun) from representatives from government, business schools, businesses and other organisations – including Sony, Airbus, Barclays, Santander, Euan Blair’s start-up WhiteHat, the Sutton Trust, the Chartered Management Institute, Aston Martin and the British Library – defending the apprenticeship levy.
We’ve all seen first-hand that apprenticeships can change the lives of apprentices – and the businesses they work with – for the better; and we believe that the apprenticeship levy gives employers a real opportunity to invest in training, bringing the well-recognised enthusiasm and new ideas of apprentices to their business.
Employers are developing new, high-quality apprenticeships, at all levels, all the time. World-leading companies like Google, Facebook and Sage are kicking off new apprenticeships in sectors at the cutting edge – and that’s great to see.
We’re also pleased to see more people starting on new higher and advanced level apprenticeships; these are a passport into a range of exciting industries, including nuclear, food science, law, engineering, professional services, construction, and digital technology.
The new Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship has proven popular with over 900 people starting on it since the start of 2015/16, and more than 1,700 people have now started a Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship, giving them the chance to advance into leadership roles. Degree apprenticeships are being rolled out across a variety of subjects, with over 100 higher education institutions now on board.
We need to make sure business has the skilled workers it needs - at all levels; and the jobs of tomorrow are likely to require a greater focus on technical education. So while it is fantastic that apprenticeship opportunities are becoming more diverse and high quality, there is more we can all do.
University should not continue to be viewed as the only route to a successful career. Giving people choice is essential, whether they pursue a technical route or an academic one. That’s why we should support employers in making use of the levy, and in providing opportunities for people to learn, earn, and get on in life.
Anne Milton, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister
Sir Gerry Berragan, CEO, Institute for Apprenticeships
Euan Blair and Sophie Adelman, Co-Founders, WhiteHat
Steve Dalton, Managing Director, Sony Global Manufacturing & Operations Corporation
Andy Palmer, President & CEO, Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd
Mark Stewart, General Manager and HR Director, Airbus
Mike Thompson, Head of Apprenticeships, Barclays
Bruce Carnegie-Brown, Chairman of Lloyd’s of London, Chairman of Moneysupermarket.com Group, Vice-Chairman of Banco Santander BA
Sir Peter Lampl, Founder, Sutton Trust
Dalton Leong, Chief Executive, The Children's Trust
Dame Louise Makin, CEO, BTG plc
Phil Spence, Chief Operating Officer, The British Library
Chris Blackburn, Pro Vice-Chancellor & Dean, Oxford Brookes Business School, Oxford Brookes University
Timothy Wheeler, Vice-Chancellor & Principal, University of Chester
Baback Yazdani, Dean of Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University
Professor Angus Laing FRSA Dean, Lancaster University Management School
Lucy Ireland, Managing Director, British Computer Society Learning & Development
Karen Price OBE, CEO, Tech Partnership
Ann Francke, CEO, Chartered Management Institute
Joanne Gogerly, Operations Manager, Siemens
Paul Devoy, Chief Executive, Investors in People
Gail Bayes, Deputy Director of NTW Academy Development, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS Foundation Trust
Rosalind Penny, Assistant Director of Organisation Development, Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust
Krista Brown, Recruitment Director, the SES Group
Dr Rami Ranger CBE, Chairman, Sun Mark
Gemma Simmonds, Head of Career and Development, Colas Rail
Ben Rowland, Co-Founder, Arch Apprentices
Anne Thomas, Head of Serco Education, Serco UK & Europe
John Jeffcock, Chief Executive, Winmark C-Suite
Paul Cadman, H.R. Director, Walter Smith Fine Foods Ltd
Bridget Bartlett, Chair of Construction and Built Environment Education Advisory Committee, Trustee of University College of Estate Management
Jeannette Lichner, Managing Director, KOF Business Solutions
Gillian Wilmot, Chairman of UK Coaching, Senet, Board Mentoring, Member of the Industrial Development Advisory Board
Justin Rix, Partner, Grant Thornton UK LLP
David A Hare, Associate Director, Talent Solutions, Growth Services, Grant Thornton UK LLP
Christopher Bones, Chairman & Co-Founder, Good Growth Limited
Zoe Cunningham, Managing Director, Softwire
Robert Vince, Director, JRV Associates Ltd
Chris McLaughlin, Leadership Learning Manager, Ricoh UK
Dawn Ward CBE, Chief Executive and Principal, Burton and South Derbyshire College
Duncan Cheatle, CEO, Learn Amp
Garry Phillips, CEO, West London College
Karen Jones, Group Human Resources Director, Redrow Homes Limited
Mark Kenrick, CEO, px limited
Dylan Hannigan, Education Manager, KFC UK & Ireland
Matt Chamberlain, Apprenticeship Business Partner, Wirral University Teaching Hospital
Brian May, Managing Director, Berthon Boat Company Ltd