Posted on Tuesday 18th February 2020
Supporting people to gain the skills they need to access higher value jobs remains a focus for the county council as Staffordshire continues to see near full employment.
Working with partners including the Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership and colleges, the county council is supporting an increase in Staffordshire apprenticeships.
Across the county over the last financial year (2018/19), there were 7,300 apprenticeship starts in Staffordshire – a six per cent rise on the previous year. In 2018/19 higher level apprenticeships increased by 13 per cent on 2017/18 contributing to an increase in higher skills levels.
Figures released today show that people claiming out-of-work benefits in Staffordshire are just 2.1 per cent of the local population, lower than both national (2.9 per cent) and regional (3.8 per cent) averages.
Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for learning and employability Philip White said:
It is good that we are continuing to see near full employment in the county, but our focus remains on ensuring people are able to access better skilled and higher paid jobs.
The local enterprise partnership’s advanced manufacturing and engineering hub is doing some fantastic work in improving people’s skills in our main industry sectors and we jointly encourage businesses to take on more apprentices as a gateway to work.
Apprentices play an important part in strengthening the Staffordshire economy. It is hugely encouraging that we have seen a big increase in higher apprenticeships.
They are available at a range of levels, from the equivalent of a foundation degree to a bachelor’s degree and even master’s degree level in some sectors. “More of these specialised and highly-skilled apprenticeships are being offered each year, giving people the chance to continue professional development and fully realise their potential.”