The Prime Minister delivered his keynote speech on skills at Exeter College today.
This is the crucial section of the speech:
“So my message today is that at every stage in your life, this government will help you get the skills you need.
Through our Lifetime Skills Guarantee,
We’ll upgrade Further Education colleges across the country with huge capital investment;
We’ll expand apprenticeships, making it easier to get a high quality apprenticeship, and connect them better to local employers who know where the jobs of the future are going to emerge;
We’ll fund free technical courses for adults equivalent to A level, and extend our digital boot camps;
We’ll expand and transform the funding system so it’s as easy to get a loan for a higher technical course as for a university degree, and we’ll enable FE colleges to access funding on the same terms as our most famous universities;
And we’ll give everyone a flexible lifelong loan entitlement to four years of post-18 education — so adults will be able to retrain with high level technical courses, instead of being trapped in unemployment.
And this long-term plan – learning from what has worked around the world – will finally enable our amazing country to close the gap with other countries that in this one respect have had – or thought they had – the edge on us when it comes to skills and technical education. They thought they had the edge on us for 100 years. Well we have the talent. We have the potential. All we need to do is give people the chance.
And yes we face a once a century pandemic but now is the time to fix a problem that has plagued this country for decades.
Now is the time to end the pointless, snooty, and frankly vacuous distinction between the practical and the academic.
And now is the time to give everybody – with this Lifetime Skills Guarantee – give people of all ages the means and the confidence to switch and get the skills they need.
And now is the time for all of us to begin to build back better.”
The full speech can be read here: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/pms-skills-speech-29-september-2020