Principal’s Blog – National Apprenticeship Week, 16th March 2018

National Apprenticeship Week

Watching the news over the weekend it was a surprise to hear them reporting that the numbers going into apprenticeships has fallen over the last year. When the government have bought in the apprenticeship levy and there are so many more apprenticeships available, a rise in numbers of people taking on apprenticeships would seem more likely. However what did come to mind when watching the news report on this was that they gave a very stereotypical view on what an apprenticeship would look like, a manual role for those with low academic achievement. However this is no longer the case, apprenticeships can be accessed at intermediate level (equivalent to GCSEs) advanced (equivalent to A levels) and Higher (School leavers Programme/Degree) in all sectors of employment.

It is important that we are all aware of the benefits of taking on an apprenticeship, you continue to develop your skills and qualifications, you earn whilst you learn, more often than not your employer will employ you once you are fully qualified, for Degree Apprenticeships often the cost of the degree is paid for you.

During the week of 5th-9th March (National Apprenticeship week) the aim being to bring together employers and apprentices from across England to celebrate the success of apprenticeships whilst encouraging even more people to choose an apprenticeship as a pathway to a great career.

In Milton Keynes this actually came to life this week, as the National Apprenticeship Show was being hosted at Stadium MK on Monday 12th and Tuesday 13th March. We took a group of year 10 students who have expressed an interest in visiting a fair, having the opportunity to talk to different employment sectors about the apprenticeships they have to offer.

On Wednesday 14th March we also hosted one of our Careers Breakfasts, which this time had an apprenticeship focus, students from Year 9 and 10, as well as being joined by students from Shenley Brook End School, met with more employers who offer apprenticeships within Milton Keynes. In addition they had the opportunity to speak to young people who currently apprentices so they could hear first-hand the benefits of this career path. Students looked at apprenticeships in Hairdressing, Hospitality and Catering, Child care, Engineering, Business Administration, HR, and the NHS.

Students in Year 10-13 all have access to a platform called Unifrog, they all have been shown how to use the apprenticeship tool to search for apprenticeships.  This is very student friendly and is updated every 24 hours with live apprenticeships. It will provide them information about the role they would be taking on, including wage, length of contract, job description and how to apply. This platform will be made available to year 9 after Easter. It is a great way to know what apprenticeships are out there.

We hope to see more of our young people choosing an apprenticeship for their future pathway.

Mrs Mayles
Assistant Principal – KS5 and Pathways