Investing in our schools, Young people

Apprentice campaign smashes through 300 mark

A campaign to fill 500 apprenticeships is closing in on its target after smashing through the 300 mark.

Leader David Hodge unveiled the scheme offering businesses a cash incentive to take on apprentices after the success of Surrey County Council’s drive to fill 265 places last year.

A raft of employers have been coming forward to commit to creating apprentice roles across business administration, retail, carpentry and social care. Already 195 have been handed the £750 grant – with many hiring several teenagers – to push the total beyond 300 and another 45 employers have pledged to offer a role.

Boosting teenagers’ job prospects is part of the county council’s drive to stimulate economic growth which has also seen the number of young people in Surrey not in education, employment or training – so-called NEETs – cut by more than half.

Surrey has launched a range of other schemes to improve young people’s career prospects. These include paid job shadowing and work experience initiatives.

Mr Hodge said: “I’m delighted that so many employers have already got behind this apprentice scheme and I’m sure many more will follow suit over the coming weeks and months.

“Apprenticeships provide young people with skills they require, give businesses the workforce they need to thrive and help the economy grow, which is why we’re aiming to create another 500 places on top of the 265 that were arranged last year.”

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