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Apprenticeships still not seen as equal to university education

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Research from thinktank Demos shows that parents view apprenticeships as the route for those who are less academic.

This is wrong, says Andrew Leck of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.

“The last government invested heavily in university as the pathway to a career and it is going to take a concerted effort from business, government and professional bodies to make parents realise that apprenticeships are an excellent route.”

A telling part of the report is that while over 90 per cent of parents agree apprenticeships are a good option for young people, only a third think it’s best for their child. University is still seen as the gold standard.

“It’s great to see that parents feel there should be more apprenticeships but clearly the message about what they are needs to change,” continues Leck. “We have repeatedly called for greater investment in career advice and this concern has been confirmed again in this report.”

Just 19 per cent had been spoken to about apprenticeships by their child’s school compared to 45 per cent who have had a conversation about university. 

Read more about apprenticeships and why they should be supported:

Charlie Mullins: Why your business should take on an apprentice

10 things every SME should know about apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are vital for our future workforce

Apprenticeships are clearly a vital route into a professional career, and there are many examples of entrepreneurs achieving huge success following apprenticeships. These include Jamie Oliver, Alexander McQueen, Ross Brawn, Stella McCartney and even the founder of the Ford motor company, Henry Ford.

“This message is not getting through and the onus is on all of us to do more to raise the standing of apprenticeships especially in the minds of parents, teachers and careers advisors,” Leck concludes.

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