Thursday, 2 April 2015

Jobs and training for young people in East Devon

This blog has looked at what is happening in East Devon in the way of training and education for young people:
Futures Forum: Apprenticeships in Sidmouth
Futures Forum: Local Labour Agreements: "Train local young people if you want to build"
Futures Forum: Reintroducing the apprenticeship system in the UK

There was an event last summer promoting such opportunities:
East Devon Jobs and Apprenticeships Fair will showcase opportunities for young people | Exeter Express and Echo
East Devon Jobs and Apprenticeship Fair “Huge Success”! | Neil Parish

Nevertheless, provision does seem to be rather minimal...

Here's a section from the Western Morning News, looking at the election campaign:

All the pundits say the 2015 General Election is one of the hardest to predict, writes Keith Rossiter. With bookies betting on an inconclusive result and the strong possibility of a hung Parliament, we ask a selection of Westcountry candidates what to expect over the next six weeks. 
Among the big issues for the South West is jobs and the economy. With high levels of deprivation in rural and coastal communities, particularly in Cornwall, jobs and spending are key concerns.

Phoney war is over in election campaign for Devon and Cornwall | Western Morning News

Indeed, there has been quite a lot of political tussle over the years when it comes to the theme of 'jobs and training': 

Speaking after the rally, Cllr Diviani said: 
"These are complex issues and it might be we can't always agree on everything, but what is absolutely clear is that we share a common goal of a thriving, economically stable East Devon where we have enough homes, jobs and training opportunities."

4,000 march to show discontent | Exeter Express and Echo
EDDC response to Saturday’s historic rally - Claire Wright

And there are different views about:
> 'skills shortages':The construction industry in Devon is facing an acute skills shortage as the economic recovery gathers pace | Western Morning News
> the importance of tourism:
House of Commons - Communities and Local Government Committee - Second Report - STAKEHOLDERS IN EXMOUTH, 6 JUNE 2006
> the promise of East Devon's eco-town:
An honest look at Cranbrook and ‘growth point’ - Claire Wright
Here is a piece on jobs, training and young people just sent in from a commentator:

On the tough question of jobs for youngsters, when I visited colleges across the country during the 1980s I always found the employment propects for art students very difficult.

Fortunately when I left school at 15 in [the 1960s] I was able to take up an apprentice ... and was able through night school, day release and a sandwich course to progress to degree level in aeronautical engineering. What I didn't appreciate at the time was this was achieved through a central governemnet initiative to maintain skills in manufacturing. In fact many of my geeration were lucky enough to take advantage of such schemes.

Sadly post-Thatcher all this has changed and as we no longer manufacture things, youths are lucky to find a job stacking shelves at the local supermarket.

For what its worth here below is some info on the Industrial Training Boards I mentioned.

1964 Industrial Training Act: central government became directly involved in employers' training practices.

The Industrial Training Act 1964 was enacted in order to make better provision for training in industry and commerce and to ensure an adequate supply of trained personnel. The Minister of Labour (later the Secretary of State for Employment) was thereby empowered to establish Industrial Training Boards (ITBs) by making industrial training orders.

By the late nineteenth century, Apprenticeships had spread from artisan trades such as building and printing to the newer industries of engineering and shipbuilding – and later to plumbing and electrical work. 
Although there were approximately 240,000 apprentices by the mid 1960s, there were growing concerns about the effectiveness of Apprenticeship training. It was criticised for its exclusivity, for being male-dominated, for focusing on serving time rather than on outcomes, and for a failure to embrace new and expanding occupations. 
Numbers had decreased to some 53,000 ('average in learning' figure) by 1990 – the decline was exacerbated by rising post-16 participation in full-time education, a lack of public funding for Apprenticeships, and the effect of the Youth Training Scheme and Youth Training programme. 
These initiatives catered for young people who might otherwise have done an Apprenticeship, but the quality of provision was often questionable and both programmes contributed to a poor perception of vocational training generally

Industrial Training Act 1964

To finish:

The defunct but influential East Devon Business Forum was not very interested in promoting training opportunities:

Unsurprisingly, the thrust of EDBF lobbying has been to persuade the council to relax planning controls for big developers and to decrease the protection for greenfield and AONB areas. After all, the Forum commented in 2011, only 1% of East Devon was developed! (4) At 34 out of 40 meetings since 2007 planning and development issues were raised, to the evident frustration of at least one member- not himself a property developer- who wondered if other matters like education and training could be discussed.(5)

Disgraced ex-councillor Brown and the East Devon Business Forum: call for action at East Devon District Council | East Devon Watch

Planning and development issues have dominated the agendas of EDBF meetings (referred to in 34 out of 40 meetings since 2007) with on one occasion the question being raised as to whether other matters such as education and training could be discussed. (EDBF Minutes 10 Apr 2008).

The influence of the East Devon Business Forum on the Local Plan | Sidmouth Independent News

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