Magazine article Public Finance

Education Bill 'Should Give Employers Training Duties'

Magazine article Public Finance

Education Bill 'Should Give Employers Training Duties'

Article excerpt

Proposals to require young people to stay in education or training until they are 18 should demand more of employers, head teachers said this week

The Association of School and College Leaders said the Education and Skills Bill did not go far enough in placing a duty on employers to ensure that 16 and 17-year-olds remain in education or training.

ASCL general secretary John Dunford said: 'For the government to be successful in raising the participation age, employers must be actively engaged with colleges, schools and other learning providers.

'It is not right that businesses which employ young people on half-time contracts should be exempt from the duty to take account of their training needs. In addition, the Bill fails to place a requirement on employers to release young workers for education courses or training in normal working hours.'

The Bill, which will raise the education leaving age to 17 by 2013 and to 18 by 2015, received its second reading in the Commons on January 14. Children, Schools and Families secretary Ed Balls described it as a landmark piece of legislation.

'Raising the education participation age is not just about economic strength, it is about social justice,' he said. …

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