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This blog post was published under the 2015-2024 Conservative Administration

Education in the Media: Friday 28 September 2018

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Apprenticeships, Universities


Today’s Education in the media blog looks at a new Civil Service apprenticeship and our position on unconditional offers.

Civil Service Apprenticeship

Today, Friday 28 September, the government has announced a new Civil Service professional economist apprenticeship. This announcement was coverage by the Guardian.

The new apprenticeship will see 75 new starters take up economist posts across government from Autumn 2019, including in the Department for Education, Department for Work and Pensions and HM Treasury.

The Government is transforming technical education in this country to offer people a genuine choice of high quality training options as well as new and exciting career opportunities.. This includes helping to create more high-quality apprenticeships with and introducing new T Level qualifications – the technical equivalent to A Levels , which will be available from 2020.

Apprenticeships and Skills Minister Anne Milton said:

I’m thrilled this new, high-quality professional economist apprenticeship has been approved.

These apprentices will have the opportunity to gain a degree while getting vital on the job training, giving them a head start in their careers.

Visit our website for more information on this announcement and how you can apply to the programme.

Unconditional Offers

Today, Friday 28 September, the Times published a piece focusing on calls from the Headmasters’ and Headmistress’ Conference, an umbrella group for 285 private schools, to address the rapid increase in unconditional offers being made to students.

We are also concerned about the increase in unconditional offers and have asked the Office for Students look at this issue.  We want students to make the right decisions for their futures and encourage universities to offer places to students who have the right skills and ability to succeed on the course they are applying to.

Universities Minister Sam Gyimah said:

The rise in unconditional offers is completely irresponsible to students and universities must start taking a lead, by limiting the number they offer.

Places at universities should only be offered to those who will benefit from them, and giving out unconditional offers just to put ‘bums on seats’ undermines the credibility of the university system.

Along with the Office for Students, I am closely monitoring the number being issued and fully expect the regulator to take appropriate action. Unconditional offers risk distracting students from the final year of their schooling, and swaying their decisions does them a disservice – universities must act in the interest of students, not in filling spaces.

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