Road to recovery: Apprenticeship support crucial says IMI

Published:  25 February, 2021


Support for apprenticeships will be crucial as the automotive sector ramps up to help the country emerge from the Coronavirus pandemic according to the IMI.

Commenting on the government’s four-stage phased plan, which prioritises the reopening of education on Monday 8 March, IMI CEO Steve Nash said: “It is welcome news that education, quite rightly, is given priority in being the first part of society to come out of lockdown and we believe this will be tremendously welcome news for the Further Education colleges and other approved training centres that support automotive apprenticeships.

“The sector has seen apprenticeship starts drop massively in the last 12 months. The first quarter of the 2020/21 academic year saw a 63% drop compared to the same period for 2019/20. And whilst it is inevitable that some employers may be pausing their recruitment plans, including bringing on new apprentices, we also believe the restrictions on education have been a deterrent for those considering an apprenticeship in automotive where so much of the learning needs to be hands-on.”

Steve added: “The last year has seen a tremendous shift to e-learning, which the IMI has supported with numerous online modules but we know that FE colleges and other IMI approved training centres are desperate to get students back into the live classroom. They know how to do this safely and with the right level of hygiene procedures and social distancing so we really hope that 8 March will see doors reopening and a new level of engagement from potential students.”

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