Colleges and training providers across South Yorkshire have worked in collaboration to secure an investment of £4.2 million from the Local Skills Improvement Fund to support a step change in the skills provision needed to transform the regional economy and drive a high-tech future.
The funding programme will be used to make the skills system more accessible to employers, to remove barriers that are currently making it difficult to recruit apprentices, to raise the level of digital training offered by our providers, and to ultimately improve the opportunities and prospects that are available to residents. In this sense, it will be vital in addressing many of the priorities that were identified by the South Yorkshire Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP) earlier in the year.
Reacting to this positive development, the South Yorkshire Chambers in Doncaster, Sheffield, and Barnsley & Rotherham issued this joint statement:
“When it comes to skills, there is a great deal that we should be proud and appreciative of here in the region. After all, we are home to three brilliant University Technical Colleges — with another one on the way — all of our further education providers are ranked Oftsed good or better, and we benefit from a number of strong and highly effective partnerships.
“Yet this crucially does not mean that there isn’t room from improvement. Indeed, we should always aspire to better ourselves and know that this is a view shared by many of our partners across South Yorkshire.
“In fact, those very same education providers that we just mentioned were absolutely instrumental in the development of our South Yorkshire LSIP and constructively engaged with the project right from the beginning. They did this because they too realise the importance of being agile and responsive to the needs, not just of their learners, but also of local employers.
“We therefore welcome this additional funding from the Department for Education, as it will help bring many of the recommendations from that LSIP to fruition and help colleges and universities to fulfil their laudable ambitions.
“Learners will be afforded new opportunities to develop the skills they need to thrive in the modern workplace — particularly embracing digital technology —while businesses will be able to harness the resulting talent to innovate and grow towards a more prosperous future.
“To reiterate, it is of vital importance that we have a skills system in the region that meets the needs of both local employers and learners. While we already have some fantastic provision in that respect, we believe that this investment from DfE will help take it to the next level and we have already commenced work with our excellent providers to realise the full value of the investment and meet our ambitions for South Yorkshire .”