Last night, Ben Bradley MP spoke in a debate on the Skills and Post-16 Education Bill to highlight the positive impact it will have on his constituents in Mansfield and Warsop.
The Mansfield MP welcomed the Bill and “the intention to create better technical and vocational pathways for young people and give them clear careers advice, so that they end up on the right route for them”. He also welcomed the recent funding boost for these pathways and praised the West Notts College and Nottingham Trent University partnership by describing it as a “fantastic example” in Mansfield, which could be built on.
Mr Bradley also praised the Secretary of State’s commitment to rationalise BTECs and ensure the best ones are kept to provide clear routes to post-16 education for young people. Mr Bradley was one of 118 MPs and peers that wrote to the Secretary of State for Education to urge him to make an “early reassessment” of the Department for Education’s plan to remove funding for the vast majority of applied general qualifications such as BTECs. Mr Bradley is delighted that the campaign was a success.
He raised concerns about the level 3 entitlement and highlighted the fact that communities such as Mansfield could face challenges when trying to access level 3, as 25% of people leave school with no level 2 qualifications. Mr Bradley requested additional support to help people and offered Mansfield to hold a pilot scheme.
Finally, Mr Bradley also highlighted the ongoing dialogue surrounding devolution and county deals. He requested a meeting with the Department for Education to discuss what scope there was to include post-16 education in conversations about adult skills to join things up and “to look at how we can embed social care interventions and youth work into that to do something really positive for young people’s life chances.”
Commenting, Ben Bradley MP said:
“I’m pleased I had the opportunity to speak in the Chamber last night and welcome the Skills and Post-16 Education Bill. As a Further Education Ambassador, I know that this Bill will make a huge difference to people in Mansfield and Warsop and it’s great to see the intention of creating better technical and vocational pathways for young people. I’m also glad I had another chance to praise the fantastic partnership between West Notts and Nottingham Trent University, which is something our area should be really proud of!
“Of course, I couldn't stand up in the Chamber without mentioning ongoing conversations about devolution and county deals. There's a lot of emphasis about adult skills in the Budget and I believe there's an opportunity to include post-16 in the conversation and join these things up. I requested a meeting with the Department to look at how we can embed social care interventions and youth work, which would be really positive for young people's life chances across Mansfield.
“It was also a relief to hear confirmation from the Secretary of State that BTECs will not be scrapped, and I completely agree that we need to keep the best ones so people in constituencies like mine have a clear route to post-16 education.”