Prime Minister’s apprenticeships ‘troubleshooter’ taskforce officially unveiled

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This is Prime Minister David Cameron’s new “troubleshooter” taskforce set to track government progress on its 3m apprenticeship starts by next parliament target.

It contains eight MPs including Skills Minister Nick Boles and his predecessor Matthew Hancock, who is the Cabinet Office Minister and also chairs the group.

They will be joined on the “earn or learn” taskforce by, among others, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan and Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith.

In addition to taskforce’s remit to “ support 3m new apprenticeships,” the group is also tasked with “making sure that all young people are either earning or learning” and “helping businesses to create 2m new jobs to achieve full employment”.

It is one of 10 new taskforces, including immigration and childcare, set up to track policy performance.

A Number 10 spokesperson said: “Each group will be looking whether policy is being followed through and tracking the progress of new measure in that space.

“The group will be made up of key persons in the department, making sure the policies are implemented,  troubleshooting and fixing teething problems.

“The best way to measure what they will do is to look at the key commitments we’re making in that area — in the case of earn or learn, we’ve promised the 3m apprenticeships and the work programmes with the Department for Work and Pensions to ensure young people on benefits get work experience as soon as possible.

“The meetings will be held within weeks, but they will be treated like an internal delivery meeting, and we will not be releasing details of each individual meeting.”

The make-up of each taskforce was released today by Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Oliver Letwin, who is in overall charge of the Cabinet Office and also sits on the earn or learn taskforce.

“I am publishing an updated Cabinet Committees list. Alongside the committees, the Prime Minister has created 10 implementation taskforces to monitor and drive delivery of the government’s most important cross-cutting priorities,” he said.

See FE Week edition 140, dated Monday, June 8, for more.

The earn or learn task force consists of:

Cabinet Office Minister Matthew Hancock (chair)

Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Oliver Letwin
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith
Communities and Local Government Secretary Greg Clark
Education Secretary Nicky Morgan
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Greg Hands
Employment Minister Priti Patel
Skills Minister Nick Boles

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  1. Mike Farmer

    Given the decline in part-time higher education, and the government’s plans for for more higher and degree apprenticeships, what are we to make of the omission of Jo Johnson from this group, I wonder?

  2. Terry Miles

    So who’s going to actually talk to and guide and raise young peoples’ aspirations, to make the contacts and phone calls to get these apprenticeship places filled without immense wastage then? Where did all the careers advisers go? Oh yes I remember, SoontobeSir Eric Pickles sacked them when he closed the Connexions service…

  3. Its great news that the continued drive for apprenticeships goes on, however when is the government going to make funding for these clear and easily accessible? Funding direct to employers is great for the larger organisations but what about those SME’s. We all need support on this.
    Quality is always an issue whenever you attach funding to training, who’s going to monitor this?

  4. les kaye

    Great if these are British apprenticeships but I fear the scheme will simply draw more job-seekers from the poorer parts of Europe and leave UK unemployment levels just where they are.