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70th Year Celebrations for Apprenticeships

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Plans to transform the apprenticeship scheme have been welcomed by industry sectors across the Bailiwick.

From 2019, additional apprenticeships will be available across a wider variety of industries.

This development will see an evolution of apprenticeships available to the community over the next five years. The Guernsey College of Further Education will be launching apprenticeships in Retail, Care and Early Years, and will also include English and Maths support for apprentices. Following employer feedback, a range of entry criteria has also been implemented.

Following the launch of the changes in October 2018, a number of concerns about the grant element of apprenticeships were raised by the construction industry. Over the last few months further consultation has taken place with representatives from the Guernsey Building Trades Employers Association (GBTEA) and Construction Industry Forum (CIF) on behalf of the construction industry, which has resulted in the proposals relating to the grant being amended. The Committee forEducation Sport & Culture have agreed the new proposals for an interim period of two years so that further work can take place with the construction sector specifically.

2019 is a significant milestone as it marks the 70th anniversary of apprenticeship provision in the Bailiwick. The first Apprenticeship Scheme was approved by the States on 14 December 1949 and has been meeting this training need of the Bailiwick ever since.

In order to mark the significant contribution apprentices and the Apprenticeship Scheme has had to our community a year of celebration is planned. There are a number of events taking place throughout the year including a celebratory event and an exhibition. We are now looking for 70 former apprentices, one from each year of the scheme, to act as our Alumni who started their careers as an apprentice in the Bailiwick.

There will be thousands of Islanders who completed their apprenticeships locally and have gone on to have extremely successful careers. The Guernsey College of Further Education would like to invite those that have completed apprenticeships in the past, to join the celebrations and be one of our Alumni. If you want to express your interest to get involved then please contact the apprenticeship team on 01481 737500 or apprenticeships@gcfe.net.

Deputy Matt Fallaize, President of the Committee forEducation, Sport & Culture, said:

'I am happy to confirm that the Committee has agreed the interim proposals put forward by the College, in collaboration with the construction industry. Feedback from employers and organisations is always welcomed and I would like to thank both the GBTEA, CIF and the College for working together to resolve the concerns raised about the grant.'

Louise Misselke, Principal of the College of Further Education said:

'We believe that apprenticeships are an aspirational education pathway for all industries in the Bailiwick and the College is committed to ensuring that the available provision meets our economic development needs. The 70th anniversary is a fantastic opportunity to recognise the contribution apprentices and their employers have made to our community and to celebrate the achievements that have been accomplished by both apprentice's students, staff at the College and also of course our partner employers'

Steve Rousell, President of the Guernsey Building Trades Employers Association, said:

'GBTEA Members are fiercely proud and protective of the Construction Trades Apprenticeships and consider them vital to the future prosperity and wellbeing of the Guernsey building industry. The Guernsey apprenticeship scheme is envied by other jurisdictions. It is a great example of an effective collaboration between industry, the States and educators to provide school leavers wishing to enter the building trades with a combination of practical experience backed by continued structured learning. The fact that the scheme has lasted 70 years is testament to this. The GBTEA has always had a close relationship with the College of Further Education and we are pleased that they have consulted with us and amended proposals to provide an interim funding arrangement that is fair for employers and apprentices. We look forward to working with the College to develop long term arrangements that will ensure that the apprenticeship scheme is supported by the building industry for the next 70 years.'

Tim Guilbert, Chairman of the Construction Industry Forum, said:

'The Construction Industry Forum Executive and members have for many years worked closely with the College and have specifically had regular meetings regarding the provision and delivery of the apprenticeship scheme and other construction related courses.

'We clearly recognise the College is challenged to cut costs and adopt a user pays approach as with so many other areas of today's Island Life driven by our current States of Deliberation policy.

'That said we are delighted both the College and The Committee for Education Sport & Culture have listened to and taken on board the concerns of our industry, we are encouraged by the changes to the proposals and will continue to work closely with all parties to ensure the final proposals meet our industries needs and allow the continued promotion of the apprenticeship scheme as an excellent pathway into the Guernsey Construction Industry.'

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