Cabinet Secretary announces new target of Modern Apprentices for Scotland.
The target of 26,000 Modern apprentices for the year 2016 /2017 has been set by Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work Roseanna Cunningham.
The new target was outlined in a speech at an SCDI Skills summit in Dundee and is the next step as we work towards our ambition of having 30,000 apprentices a year by 2020.
Speaking ahead of the event the Ms Cunningham, said:
"Modern Apprenticeships form a significant part of our work to address youth employment and the latest figures show that over the past four years, the Scottish Government has supported more than 101,000 Modern Apprenticeship starts – exceeding our ambitious target to deliver 25,000 MA opportunities in each year of the current Parliament.
"The journey to this point has been remarkable. In 2007 there were just 15,000 people starting Modern Apprenticeships. We are now delivering more than 25,000 MAs each year (25,247 in 2014/15) and this will now increase to 26,000 for the year ahead.
"And in total, since this Government came into office in 2007 more than 190,000 MA starts have been delivered, which is a fantastic achievement - but we are committed to doing even more to achieve our ambition of having 30,000 by 2020.
"It is crucial that we continue to invest, not only in our young people by making sure that they have the right opportunities to learn and develop their skills and gain access to the labour market, but also to support industry and business right across Scotland. Modern Apprentices are key to delivering economic development and a strong economy.
"This week as part of Scottish Apprenticeship Week Government Ministers are out and about engaging with employers, from across the spectrum seeing first-hand the difference that modern apprenticeships make in the world of work."
Scottish Apprenticeship Week runs from 29 February to 4 March which is organised by Skills Development Scotland to promote the benefits apprenticeships bring to businesses, individuals and the economy.
Chairman of Skills Development Scotland, John F McClelland CBE, said:
"More and more employers see the benefits that apprentices bring to their businesses. Apprenticeships mean businesses can find the talent they need for the growth they want. Our website apprenticeships.scot now makes it even easier for businesses to tap into the next generation of enthusiastic workers and for young people to find apprenticeship opportunities."
Ross Martin, Chief Executive of SCDI and the organisers of the skills summit in Dundee,said:
"We are delighted to again be supporting Skills Development Scotland in delivery of Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2016 and to have our Skills Summit in Dundee opened by Scottish Government Minister Roseanna Cunningham MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills & Training. It is essential for our country's productivity levels that Scotland's private, public and social economy sectors together address the two key skills challenges of improving the transition from school to employment and enabling people to adapt to the changing nature of the economy."
Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2016, organised by Skills Development Scotland, is an excellent opportunity to draw attention to the value that apprenticeships could bring to employers, and help encourage them to offer these rewarding opportunities to young people across Scotland.