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Language: English / Gàidhlig


Seòmar agus comataidhean

Question reference: S6W-16939

  • Date lodged: 6 April 2023
  • Current status: Answered by Graeme Dey on 4 May 2023


To ask the Scottish Government what action it is taking to ensure that schools (a) provide parity of esteem for and (b) encourage pupils to take up apprenticeship opportunities.


The Scottish Government’s Youth Employment Strategy – Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) has, since its inception in 2014, remained committed to supporting young people by ensuring that a wide range of pathways and routes into apprenticeships are open to young people. As part of that, we created Foundation Apprenticeships (FAs), with partners across the education and skills system. FAs provide a combination of qualifications and work-based learning for young people in the senior phase of school.

Since their introduction in 2016, 15,371 school pupils have enrolled on an FA and they are now available across all Local Authorities. FAs are now recognised by all Colleges and Universities in Scotland and Scottish Government worked with the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) to ensure that FAs have UCAS tariff points for universities. Work has also been undertaken to ensure that FAs at SCQF Level 6 are appropriately recognised in schools metrics.

Skills Development Scotland (SDS) undertakes activities to support greater parity of esteem and to encourage pupils to take up apprenticeships. SDS careers advisors deliver information sessions on apprenticeships to all pupils in S2 and S3 as they approach option choices. SDS engages directly with parents and teachers to raise awareness of apprenticeships. FA webinars were held in January and March 2023 with a panel of apprentices, employers and teaching staff to share their experiences. Apprenticeship teaching resources are available on SDS’ My World of Work, this includes an FA Schools Toolkit for teachers and a refreshed apprenticeship CPD module for teachers.

SDS also lead on the annual Scottish Apprenticeship Week campaign, which includes a wide array of school activity, with the aim of promoting Modern, Foundation and Graduate Apprenticeships to young people.

DYW Regional Groups also work with SDS, colleges and training providers to highlight the importance of vocational pathways, including apprenticeships to help young people develop key skills and transition to work. This work is enhanced through the placement of DYW School Coordinators in every mainstream secondary school, to highlight work-based learning and help people take that path that is right for them.