Opinion: Tech Levels
City & Guilds responds to the Government's plans to introduce Tech Levels
04 July 2013
Chris Jones, CEO and Director General of City & Guilds, shares his thoughts on the Government's plans to introduce Tech Levels:
‘High-quality vocational qualifications are the key to developing the UK’s future workforce and filling the ever-increasing skills gaps, so the excessive focus on league tables in today’s announcement is potentially very damaging.
‘By only including ‘Tech Level’ qualifications in the league tables, it infers that many other vocational qualifications are worthless. This is incorrect. As shown by recent research from the IPPR [Institute for Public Policy Research], countries that have more young people engaged in vocational education see lower levels of youth unemployment.
‘We have qualifications across a range of industries. All are developed in conjunction with employers to provide a clear pathway for young people, whether they continue in education or progress onto employment.
‘In addition, today’s changes do not go far enough to address the clear disconnect between employers and education. It’s not just qualifications that make people employable – it’s about having the right attitude and an awareness of the workplace. Employers need to provide young people with opportunities to experience the world of work first-hand, not just endorse qualifications.
‘Work experience will be central to City & Guilds’ TechBac qualification, which is currently being developed with employers. This qualification will help to provide young people with the skills and awareness of the working world that they need to succeed and progress in their careers.’