Local Bid To Boost London's Apprentices

Partnership aims to increase places

Two local organisations have formed a partnership to help increase the number of apprenticeship places across the capital.

Wimbledon-based Capital Training Group Ltd, in partnership with Merton Chamber of Commerce, have been awarded a contract to disseminate good practice and develop a staff training toolkit to help training providers engage with employers and increase the number of apprenticeships offered by London's small and medium sized businesses. 

The Apprenticeship Staff Support Programme (ASSP) project is managed by the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) which is commissioned and funded by the Education and Training Foundation.

The ASSP contract for London builds on the good practice developed by Merton's Economic Wellbeing Group and Merton Chamber of Commerce's 'Take One' campaign that has created more than 150 new apprenticeship places through brokering a partnership between businesses, training providers and young people.

Shirley Woodcock, Business Development Manager at Capital Training Group, in Worple Road, said: "Our innovative training offer combines the insights gained from Merton Chamber’s highly successful 'Take One' campaign together with an online toolkit developed by the Chamber and Capital Training. This powerful blended learning model will encourage training providers to review how they work with employers and help them learn new techniques to achieve long-term relationships with local employers."

Merton Chamber's CEO Diana Sterck is the driving force behind the 'Take One' initiative. For the ASSP London project, she will be sharing her experience of boosting apprenticeship numbers locally.

"Employer engagement, particularly among smaller businesses, has long been a challenge in creating Apprenticeship opportunities," she said.

"Increasing the number of Apprenticeships is one of the top priorities to help address the employment and skills needs of London. In addition, new plans are being developed to put employers in the driving seat by giving them control over the funding of Apprenticeship training, which means there is no better time for the capital’s training providers to improve and develop their relationships with business."

Staff from London colleges and training providers are invited to attend one of four ASSP training events taking place in October 2014. The project aims to recruit and train 48 employer engagement practitioners who will then be equipped to disseminate learning within their own organisations.

The ASSP training events, which run from 09.00 -14.00 are planned to take place on the following dates and venues:

October 14   South Thames College, Merton campus.

October 15  Westminster Kingsway College, Victoria campus.

October 21  Barking and Dagenham College, Rush Green campus. 

October 22  London Metropolitan University.

For more information and registration for training providers visit  www.mertonchamber.co.uk/events.

September 23, 2014