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Report shows Modern Apprenticeships begins well

12 April
Media Statement

Maharey: Report shows Modern Apprenticeships begins well

An evaluation of the pilot phase of Modern Apprenticeships shows a strong endorsement for it from employers and Modern Apprentices, Associate Minister of Education (Tertiary Education) Steve Maharey said today.

The report Formative Evaluation of the Modern Apprenticeships Pilots was prepared by Skill New Zealand as the first part of an ongoing evaluation process.

According to the report, the Modern Apprenticeships pilot has confirmed the demand from young people and their parents for supported training in the workplace. Employers have responded positively to Modern Apprenticeships, in particular the individualised approach to training and the services provided by Modern Apprenticeships Co-ordinators.

“Government had two aims when we began Modern Apprenticeships,” Mr Maharey said. “One was to increase the number of young people able to access quality apprenticeship training, the other was to address the skills shortages we saw developing in key industries.”

“Modern Apprenticeships is making significant headway on these issues.

“We now have well over 500 Modern Apprentices. There is evidence that young people who may not have otherwise considered careers in industry are including Modern Apprenticeships in their thinking. More than 50% of the new apprentices are 18 or under. This is a group who have tended to miss out in recent years.”

Modern Apprenticeships Co-ordinators report they are confident of meeting Government’s targets of up to 1,300 Modern Apprentices in training by mid-2001 and 3,000 in 2002.

Modern Apprentices and their employers interviewed as part of the evaluation responded positively to the services provided by Modern Apprenticeships Co-ordinators.

Employers identified benefits in recruitment and administration. “The recruitment aspects of the co-ordinator role are highly valued because the current Modern Apprentice is excellent”, one employer said. Modern Apprentices described the co-ordinator as a mentor who assists them through the training process. “I feel that the whole thing is under control and can understand it better,” one apprentice commented.

Modern Apprenticeships Co-ordinators are required to work collaboratively with other co-ordinators, Industry Training Organisations and stakeholders to promote opportunities for young people in industry. The report confirms this has been happening, providing a good foundation for the expansion of Modern Apprenticeships.

Mr Maharey has also received a report from Skill New Zealand analysing responses to the 0800 toll-free phone number which prospective employers, apprentices and their parents ring for information on Modern Apprenticeships. The call and web site enquiry patterns show a consistently high interest across New Zealand, with relatively high numbers in the Auckland area. Call numbers showed a significant rise in the usually quiet January period, coinciding with the national rollout of stage 1 of Modern Apprenticeships and the launch of the national marketing campaign.

Formative Evaluation of the Modern Apprenticeships Pilots is available from Skill New Zealand’s National Office (0-4-801 5588) or www.skillnz.govt.nz.


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