For those of you who aren’t familiar with her, Gillian Keegan is the Minister for Apprenticeship and Skills within the Department for Education. Her brief also extends to overseeing England’s career guidance system.
I have been using various strategies to try and get a bit more clarity about what the Minister actually thinks about careers and what, if anything, her plans for the area are. The other day my MP (who I have been badgering about these issues) sent me the following responses from her which set’s out the government’s policy on careers.
This document is useful as it sets out what the government’s policy is on the area. However, it misses a lot of the problems that I have been trying to highlight along with colleagues in the Career Development Policy Group and the wider careers and education sectors.
In particular I continue to be confused about why the government have added new funding into the National Careers Service budget, but refused to open up the groups that the Service can work with. This means that we are in the bizarre position of having the National Careers Service being told that workers who have been made redundant or unemployed are not a priority for it to see.
Along with hundreds of other people I have set this out in an open letter to Gillian Keegan that we sent on Thursday. In it we ague that the government needs to review the way in which the National Careers Service is funded and make the following changes.
- Ensure that all adults, from 18 until retirement, who are at risk of redundancy or currently unemployed, are identified as a priority for the National Careers Service. The Service’s funding principles need to be changed accordingly.
- National Careers Service providers should be allocated a proportion of the new funding up front to allow them to recruit, train and develop staff to deliver quality services against the new level of demand.