Prioritise adult skills to avoid unemployment ‘twilight zone’, NIACE says

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Written by Seun Robert-Edomi on 9 July 2014 in News

Tom Stannard believes there is a lot to welcome in the LGA’s report, especially calls to match training with local jobs and to refocus on employment skills and back to work support

Skills must be integrated through Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) to meet address skills shortages and fill skills gaps.

That’s according to the National Institute of Adult Contunuing Education (NIACE) who responded to a report launched by the Local Government Association (LGA) at its annual conference yesterday, calling for radical new powers to be given to councils to help transform the lives of millions of people who could be trapped in a future unemployment "twilight zone".

Tom Stannard, NIACE deputy chief executive, believes there is a lot to welcome in the LGA’s report, especially calls to match training with local jobs and to refocus on employment skills and back to work support, however, he says a number of the proposals focus on younger people and boosting teenage participation in education and training. He wants more of a focus on adult skills.

“Longer working lives are a reality which we need to tackle and benefit from. To address current and future skills shortages we must recognise the talent and potential of older people. The Government is already incorporating lessons learned from our Mid-life Career Review Pilots to ensure older workers can access an in-depth career review for the first time.

“But we need to go even further to deliver a skills-led recovery which makes the most of greater longevity, as outlined in our recently published Manifesto - Skills for Prosperity. A truly lifelong learning society recognises and values the contribution of all individuals.

“Personal Skills Account for all adults linked to an entitlement to career reviews will put people in control of their own skills development. Skills and economic growth strategies must be integrated, through LEPs and combined authorities, to meet local labour market needs, address skills shortages and fill skills gaps.​ This is why our manifesto calls for a "new localism" to help councils and LEPs deliver this. It will help people to thrive in their careers, boosting productivity and ensuring vibrant economic growth that will lead to prosperity for all.”



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