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DfE approves CITB’s plan to support employers to develop Trailblazers


The Department of Education (DfE) has approved a CITB plan to support employers to develop the construction industry’s new Apprenticeship Standards, which will replace existing Frameworks.

Development of the Standards will continue to be employer-led to ensure apprentices’ training is in line with the industry’s skills needs. The plan aims to have all construction Apprenticeship Standards agreed and in place by July 2017.

DfE is supportive of the sector working together on this proposal and of CITB’s role in facilitating the development. The sector taking a strategic approach to Apprenticeship Standards development will prevent proposals being duplicated or being too narrowly defined.

DfE has emphasised that employer groups are still free to submit proposals to develop Standards outside of this process, if required.

Steve Radley, Policy Director at CITB, says: “This is fantastic news. We now have a chance to get the industry’s Apprenticeship Standards in place by next summer, so employers and providers will be able to access the higher funding rates offered by Government sooner than expected and apprentices can begin on more robust training programmes delivered through Standards in 2017.

“While CITB will be coordinating the development of the industry’s Apprenticeship Standards, it’s crucial that employers of all sizes get involved to help shape the way the industry will train the future workforce.”

CITB has already been approached by many employers who are keen to get involved and develop the training content of the new Apprenticeship Standards. CITB has undertaken a review of existing frameworks and identified those that have little or no existing employer support.

The aim is now to bring employers together to identify the skills the industry needs. CITB will provide significant resource and experience in supporting employers to develop robust Apprenticeship Standards.

Martin Hind, owner of Hind Joiners and Builders Ltd., says: “Many SME employers like us are passionate about training and apprenticeships. We want to contribute to the future skills development in construction, but we need the skills, experience, and resources of CITB in to support us. It is fantastic that DfE is supporting construction employers and CITB in taking this plan forward.”

Alison Lamplough, Laing O’Rourke Head of Operational Training and Apprenticeships, said: “This is a really positive development for construction. Employers need to take ownership of the development of new Standards, but we need a more strategic approach in identifying the industry skills requirements and the approach to development.

“This is where CITB can offer significant support to employers and can ensure participation from companies of all sizes. It is really pleasing to see DfE support the sector development plan and its aim of delivering the Standards we need in 2017.”

CITB is now asking employers and federations who are keen to be part of the sector plan, either as part of a development team or as a reviewer of Standards, to register their interest.


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