Better equality for apprentices


BETTER representation for women, minority groups, care leavers and the disabled is at the heart of new investment in Modern Apprenticeships (MAs).

The Scottish Government has announced that an additional £500,000 will be available to Skills Development Scotland (SDS) to develop and implement a new action plan for better equality within the programme.

The funding will go towards a number of actions including:

  • implementing specific initiatives to open up opportunities for each under-represented group 
  • marketing campaigns to raise awareness among the disabled, ethnic minorities and care leavers
  • a national event with training providers to share best practice.

The action plan follows the publication of the Scottish Government’s Youth Employment Strategy – Developing the Young Workforce – which placed equality at the heart of a long term plan to improve vocational training in Scotland.

Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills and Training Roseanna Cunningham said, “Next week is Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2015, which will see a number of Scottish Government ministers getting closely involved in a range of events to highlight the benefits of MAs to employers and the wider economy. 

“As we move towards our commitment to deliver 30,000 new MA opportunities by 2020, it is vital that we continue to tackle inequality, as highlighted in our response to Commission for Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce, central to our work in this area.

“The funding I am announcing today will assist SDS to work with experts in equality issues to better support a range of groups to tackle long-standing issues with their under-representation in vocational education, including the MA programme. This will identify opportunities for vocational training that works for all of Scotland’s people.

“The Equalities Action Plan is one element of our seven year change programme that will see our vocational education system support the aspirations of a more diverse workforce and meet the needs of our employers.”