To mark this year's Apprenticeship Week, new figures have revealed that more than 12,000 apprenticeships have been started in Wallasey since 2010. This is part of 5.7 million apprenticeships across the country.
With nearly 700 different apprenticeship courses now available, young people have the widest-ever range of options available to ensure they learn the skills they need to succeed in a career they want.
Just this week, the Government added to the options, by introducing a new teaching apprenticeship that will offer a high-quality, alternative route for people to become qualified teachers.
This is on top of record levels of funding in skills and apprenticeships with investment to apprenticeships increasing to £2.7 billion by 2024-25, creating a world-leading skills system that is employer-focused, high quality, and fit for the future.
Before becoming a councillor, Ian Lewis worked to promoted apprenticeships to school leavers across Merseyside.
Welcoming this latest milestone, Cllr. Lewis said:
"For too long, university was presented as the best option for school leavers, often because the only alternative was short term Government training schemes. Yet, for many people, university is not and never has been the best choice.
"When I left education, the only option for me was a Youth Training Scheme, with no formal qualifications at the end of it and little to show prospective employers.
"Now, after significant investment to extend the range of apprenticeships, as well as raising the standards and support provided, we are seeing thousands of school leavers choose this as their preferred option."
Conservatives have also extended the National Minimum Wage to include apprentices. Previously, under Labour, they were excluded. And, from 1 April 2024, workers aged 21 and over will be entitled to the National Living Wage.
Commenting, Minister for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education, Robert Halfon MP, added:
“Apprenticeship week is an opportunity to reflect on all that apprentices across the country have achieved and the immense contribution they continue to make to our economy.
“Under the Conservatives and Rishi Sunak, our plan is working with over 5.7 million people starting apprenticeships since 2010 – enabling young people to climb the ladder of opportunity to good jobs and higher wages.
“This progress would be destroyed by Labour who would take us back to square one by halving apprenticeships, risking the futures of thousands of young people across the country.”