***RESULTS OF VOTE***
THE TOP POLICY WAS JAKE HAYMAN’S ALUMNI NETWORK FOR EVERY STATE SCHOOL IN THE COUNTRY – CONGRATULATIONS!
No.2: Anthony Painter – Create a new high quality technical education offer for those aged 14+
No.3 (JOINT) : Amanda Ramsay – To start a national Skills Mentoring Scheme (SMS)
and Allan Graveson – Fiscal incentives for training
Policy in the pub –
2 minute policy ideas for the future of UK skills
A joint event with
CHAIR: Michael White – Assistant Editor, The Guardian
2 MINS EACH TO PRESENT A POLICY IDEA
2 MINUTES Q&A PER POLICY
ONE VOTE – ONE TOP POLICY FOR SKILLS
WHEN? 6.30pm-8.30pm, TUESDAY 17 JANUARY
WHERE? THE BARLEY MOW (pub), 104 Horseferry Road, Westminster, London, SW1P 2EE ***In upstairs function room***
5-10 Mins walking distance from Parliament
REFRESHMENTS PROVIDED – FREE ENTRY – ALL WELCOME
SPEAKERS: Introduction from Sue Ferns (Chair, Unions21) and John Slinger (Editor, Pragmatic Radicalism).
Winner Announced by Tom Wilson (Director, unionlearn).
PRIZES FOR TOP POLICIES (kindly donated by GMB Southern Region).
IDEAS ALREADY SUBMITTED INCLUDE:
Josie Cluer – Pragmatic Radicalism contributer and former Labour Special Adviser
Match unemployed graduates to jobseekers who lack basic skills
Britain has a basic skills crisis: 5m people are not able to read and write, damaging their prospects in employment and in life. At the same time, we have 100,000 unemployed graduates. We should set up a scheme to match volunteer graduates to job-seekers who need help in learning basic skills. Job seekers without basic skills could improve their skills and graduates could build a bank of experience to help them get jobs. And at no cost to the exchequer!
Van Coulter – Councillor and Executive Member for Leisure, Oxford City Council
Opportunities for the UK workforce through expansion of renewable energy generation
As a nation, we have committed to providing at least fifteen per cent of our energy needs through solar PV. However, as a nation we are facing a significant shortage of skilled installation engineers needed to make good this commitment. Providing robust skills training will enable many tens of thousands people to enter a career with prestige and a career with a lasting future, whilst stimulating and greening our economy.
Parmjit Dhanda – Former MP, former Minister, Parliamentary and Campaigns Officer of Prospect Union
Businesses playing a greater role in university education
It’s time for sandwich courses, where a year in industry as part of an undergraduate degree becomes standard for university courses, rather than an exception. Business needs to play a bigger role in developing skilled labour and also make a contribution toward reducing student debt through the provision of a year of paid work, as part of a degree.
John Edmonds – Researcher and environmentalist
Training to prepare companies for the transition to a low carbon future
Within the next twenty years we need to transform our economy so that we use resources more efficiently and reduce carbon emissions. My idea for developing a new agenda for skills is that every company should hold a half day training session for all their staff each year at which the company’s plan for reducing carbon emissions and increasing resource efficiency will be presented and discussed. This should be followed by a discussion of the training that will be required to deliver the plan.
This process will put pressure on companies to consider what the transition to a low carbon economy will mean to them, will involve the staff in identifying the necessary measures and training needs and will raise the awareness of environmental issues throughout the UK’s workforce.
Allan Graveson – Senior National Secretary, Nautilus International
Fiscal incentives for training
The Corporation Tax system could be used to incentivise training. This may require credits where tax liabilities are low in a particular year. Tax Allowance set according to course/qualification and number. Alternatively to Corporation Tax, sector specific schemes similar to ‘Tonnage Tax’ in the shipping sector with penalty payments for non-training. This avoids complex inaccessible and wasteful funding schemes that favour low value/low skill employment. This should be for the long term, i.e. at least 10 years. This should be included in Company Annual Accounts.
Jake Hayman – Director, Future First
An alumni network for every state school in the country
Access to relevant and relatable role models is crucial for a young person’s development and has a central role to play in inspiring young people and ultimately increasing social mobility. 39% of 16 to 19 year olds who went to a state school do not know anyone in a career in which they would like to work. To this end, we propose the creation of alumni networks for every state school in Britain. Former students are relatable role models, who can raise awareness of the key skills needed in real jobs and motivate current students to take the initiative in developing these skills.
Alexandra Kemp – Coordinator, Women’s Income Network / Chief Executive, West Norfolk Women and Carers’ Pensions Network
Autonomy Skills for a Powerful Workforce
Inequality drives the longevity and healthy lifespan gap. Wages drive inequality. Low wages thrive in jobs of low support, low value, and low autonomy. The answer is to incentivise all workplaces to offer autonomy training from day 1 to transform the capability, estimation involvement and reward for every worker. We could run a railroad through workforce inequality in a generation!
Denise Linay – Royal College of Midwives
It doesn’t add up
Midwives are often required to do complex drug calculations but mention numeracy and a haze descends. Our policy idea seeks to cultivate an environment where numeracy skills are valued and not just seen as the province of those undertaking a skills for life qualification.
Paul Moloney – Shipping Consultant, First Actuarial
We need to ensure jobs deliver skill based training
We would like to make the case for a much greater emphasis in the UK on skills being taught as an integral part of the work someone does. We therefore will make the argument that dedicated stand alone training, such as cadetships and apprenticeships are outdated and do not deliver the right skills needed. In addition they present training as unproductive and expensive for many employers.
Mike Morgan-Giles – Political communications consultant and writer @mgonthemike
Bringing accountability and transparency to the skills agenda
The Government, rightly or wrongly, has commited to a private sector led economic recovery. However, while many of these private firms happily take public money for providing services, they fail to be held to account in the same way as public bodies. The methods they use to upskill their workforces often therefore remain a mystery, and to change this we need to extend the Freedom of Information Act.
Anthony Painter – Political writer; chairman of Hackney University Technical College
Create a new high quality technical education offer for those aged 14+
The purpose of education is to equip students with the capabilities to thrive socially, economically and intellectually in the world around them. A hybrid and high-quality academic, technical, personal and work-linked curriculum should exist alongside the traditional pure play academic route. It should be taught in University Technical Colleges and within specialist schools, offer progression to higher education or employment and be delivered in partnership with employers. Student strengths are varied and so should the education system be: status and quality however must be universal. A new high quality technical education offer faces this reality.
Amanda Ramsay – former London Councillor and Cabinet Member
To start a national Skills Mentoring Scheme (SMS)
Labour would start national register of experts and organisations, giving of their time, advice and expertise (and donations to part-fund scheme) to help as mentors, setting-up opportunities to access on-the-job skills for CV-building, through structured work experience, for young people and those re-training for career change. Headline grabbing ideas as well as bread and butter opportunities, from hard to access industries like music, media and film as well as the more traditional working arenas found in most towns and cities, teaching, shadowing a lawyer or legal secretary, catering, gardening, you name it, virtually all workplaces should feature.
John Slinger – Chair of Pragmatic Radicalism; strategic communications consultant
QE for Skills & online Skills Bank
If the Government / Bank of England can print £275bn to aid the banking sector, it should be possible to print vouchers for all adults of working age which are redeemable for any kind of vocational training. Such vouchers could be cashed not only at training institutions, but also at a newly-created online ‘Skills Bank’ which links people with skills and experience with new entrants to the jobs market or the unemployed. I.e. people in work would be incentivised to contribute their experience.
Tom Tàbori – Branch Secretary, Kentish Town Labour Party
Broaching the skills gap
Jane Thomas – Friends of the Earth
Building a new economy around green technologies
Repairing the public finances can be achieved by creating jobs and growth through building a “new economy” around green technologies and creating business opportunities as part of our third industrial revolution. University funding and R and D support must be geared more to the development of high end specialised green technologies such as electric cars and second generation wind & solar energy systems. And accredited skills development programmes delivered by FE colleges could help local communities to source local energy production (wind, water, anaebolic digesters).
Jonathan Todd – consultant at Europe Economics; economic columnist at Labour Uncut; associate editor of last year’s Pragmatic Radicalism: Ideas from Labour’s New Generation publication
Integrate skills funding with local economic development
Responsibility for skills funding should be devolved to re-energised Employment and Skills Boards that would bring together employers, trade unions and political leaders to ensure that skills are hardwired into local economic development strategies.
Dan Whittle – Director, Unions21
Using the lever of local government procurement to apply good practice in learning
As more public services leave direct local authority control the potential to use the contracts we make with service providers as a lever for social good grows. Ed Miliband proposed that the next Labour Government would link public procurement contracts with taking on apprentices – in the meantime Labour in local government can and should go much further.
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