Statistics on Apprenticeships and Traineeships: Our Response

25 January 2018

In response to today’s publication of statistics on apprenticeships and Traineeships, our Chief Executive, Stephen Evans said: 

“Today’s figures show another worrying fall in apprenticeship starts, down 26% compared to this time last year. The fall is smaller than in the three months after the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy, which may suggest the new system beginning to bed in. However, a smaller fall is probably not the headline the Government were looking for, and their three million target looks some distance away. 

In any case, the target is measuring the wrong thing. It’s based on starts not completions, and doesn’t look at quality or access. We need to look more broadly at the learning and skills system for young people as a whole. Our research shows a rise in the proportion of young people spending at least six months not in education, employment or training and an increasing disconnect with the official claimant count. The fall in Traineeship numbers today shows a decline in routes to apprenticeships for many young people. 

The Government’s ambition is good, and many of its policies have the right intent, but we need change for them to work. Otherwise we risk both missing the target and missing the point.”

Read the full statistics release here.