People & Skills Projects - 14 July 2015

Plan will put young people in frame for better employment prospects

A new initiative to provide schools, colleges and careers advisors with the tools to help young people develop employability skills and learn about the world of work, was launched at the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership’s Annual Conference today (Tuesday July 14).

The D2N2 Employability Framework aims to address the ‘mismatch’ between the employable skills young people leave schools, colleges and post-16 training programmes with, and the skills actually being sought by local employers.

By getting companies involved with those behind training and learning, it’s hoped to address issues such as youth unemployment and the ‘skills gap’ employers’ face, which slows the growth of their businesses.

D2N2 Annual Conference 4

Q & A Panel at the D2N2 Annual Conference – where the Employability Framework was formally launched

D2N2’s aspirations for the Employability Framework is that over two years it will see every:

  • young person in the D2N2 area leaving school or college, having experienced at least six ‘purposeful and impact measured’ interactions with an employer;
  • young person having access to impartial, independent and personalised careers education;
  • secondary school having access to a dedicated Employer Advisor, who will work with the school at a strategic level;
  • secondary school and college with a governor; with oversight for monitoring and reviewing the impact and success to all students, in relation to careers, enterprise and employability;
  • secondary school and college with access to up-to-date, user-friendly labour market intelligence specific to the D2N2 locality;
  • secondary school and college committed to delivering the D2N2 Employability Framework.

The initiative was announced at the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) 2015 Annual Conference today, held at the Chesterfield FC Proact Stadium. The LEP is a partnership of business, local authorities, skills and training providers, and community and voluntary groups, which promotes economic growth and jobs creation across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

D2N2 and its partners for the Framework – the University of Derby and the Evolve Trust – developed it with the support of a Task Group including local authorities, businesses and business sector groups, schools and school partnerships, and the National Careers Service.

Fifty-six schools in the area also responded to a consultation. Almost half (46%) of these reported having ‘extensive’ or ‘very extensive’ networks with employers, but only 16% said employer engagement was a ‘top priority’ for them.

CAREERS Local, a £2million programme, will put parts of the D2N2 Employability Framework into action and provide support to young people at risk of becoming NEETs (Not in Education, Employment or Training). CAREERS Local will be funded from D2N2’s allocation of £214million in European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), announced back in March (2015).

D2N2 will also look to support the work of the Careers and Enterprise Company, set up by the Government to back projects helping 12 to 18-year-olds access better careers advice.

The full strategy behind the Employability Framework can be read on the D2N2 LEP website at www.d2n2lep.org/skills/employability-framework.

Ian Greenaway – Employability Champion for D2N2’s Skills and Employment Commission, overseeing the Employability Framework – said: “Having a ‘shared language’ around employability for employers, young people, schools and advisors is vital. This is exactly what the Framework sets out to provide. 

“It is a strategic response to address questions of employer demand and skills supply across the D2N2 area.  We hope our local businesses will engage with it, to help our young people become the workforce that they need.

“We have already had interest from a number of schools and employers in the D2N2 area in using the Employability Framework, and we are excited about the next steps.”

The initiative’s progress will be regularly monitored by the D2N2 Skills and Employment Commission to ensure it is having an impact on areas such as youth employment, career choice and pathways, and employers reporting fewer difficulties in recruiting young people with the right skills and behaviours.

Carole Ferria, Principal at The Nottingham Emmanuel School, added: “The D2N2 Employability Framework will give us a vehicle to enhance the work that we are doing with local employers to meet future skills shortages.”

Schools and employers interested in learning more about the Employability Framework can see the full report on it at www.d2n2lep.org/skills/employability-framework

Or they can contact Katrina Woodward, Commissioning Manager for Skills and Employability at D2N2, on 01159 578753 or Katrina.woodward@d2n2lep.org

To learn more about the work the D2N2 LEP does on skills and training go to website www.d2n2lep.org/skills

For media enquiries on this news release call D2N2 Communications Officer Sean Kirby on 01159 578749 or email sean.kirby@d2n2lep.org

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