Alex Cunningham backed the call from National Schools Training for every school in the country to take on an apprentice by 2020, with the Labour MP urging schools in Stockton to take on young people as apprentices in a number of positions ranging from teaching assistants, business administration, and PE and School Sports support.
The Member of Parliament for Stockton North displayed his support for the One By 2020 campaign and met school apprentices at a recent event for the campaign held in the Houses of Parliament, hearing first-hand from apprentices, tutors and schools leaders about their experiences. The campaign comes at a critical time, with school attainment under pressure in many regions and a growing concern about increasing class sizes.
National Schools Training is the leading provider of training and apprenticeships to schools across the UK and has seen an increase of over 60 per cent during the past year in the number of apprentices being taken on by schools.
There are currently three National Schools Training apprentices working at schools in the Stockton-on-Tees area, with the uptake of school apprentices nationally increasing from 1,326 in January 2015 to 2,147 in January 2016.
“Stockton schools can play a vital role in helping young people enter the world of work through providing well paid apprenticeships in a range of roles that will provide valuable experience.
“The impact that apprenticeships can have in levelling the playing field should not be overlooked, demonstrating the value of alternative routes to employment and highlighting options beyond traditional Higher Education routes. This is all the more important with July bringing a new round of school leavers searching for opportunities right for them.
“One by 2020 is helping schools across the country to do this, and I strongly encourage schools across the Stockton borough to take part and earn the numerous workforce benefits that doing so can bring.”
Director of National Schools Training, Neil Gamewell, said: “Schools in Stockton are realising the multiple benefits of taking on apprentices, and the campaign is delighted to have the support of Alex and MPs from all parties in recognising the importance and value of apprenticeships in schools.
“Schools are realising the huge contribution an apprentice can make to school performance, and young adults are embracing this alternative route, which can often be more desirable than other options.”