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Focus in vocational education and training and apprenticeships has to be on excellence


02 Jul 2013


Social Europe & Jobs
Trade & Society

The social partners of the European metal, engineering and technology-based industries, industriAll Europe and CEEMET, welcome Commission’s focus on apprenticeships, but stress the need to properly involve sectoral and local level social partners and caution against oversimplifying benefits of dual systems. They furthermore stress the need for ensuring that apprenticeships offered are of high quality and facilitate the entry into the labour market for young people.

CEEMET, the Council of European Employers of the metal, engineering and technology-based industries, and industriAll European Trade Union welcome the launch of the “European Alliance for Apprenticeships” and signing of the tripartite Declaration of Intent at the World Skills competition this week, as well as the commitment of the European Commission, Member States and the interprofessional European social partners to promote apprenticeships. Youth unemployment is possibly the biggest challenge Europe faces today and high quality vocational education and training (VET) that reflects labour market needs and has a strong component of work-based learning undoubtedly increases employability. World Skills is an excellent example of the high level of skill and competence that young people who undertake good quality vocational education and training can develop and industry needs more of these skills and competences.

Nevertheless, it is important to make sure that apprenticeships and dual systems are not marketed as a panacea for youth unemployment. The benefits of the dual principle are real, but the implementation of such systems does not happen overnight and requires proper governance, including involvement of sectoral social partners and local industry. Not least, it requires companies with job and training vacancies that are able to provide high quality work-based learning reflecting labour market needs. Otherwise this type of training is unlikely to have the desired effect on youth employment.

CEEMET and industriAll in their joint statement on the European Commission communication ’Rethinking Education’ have put forward six recommendations for improving VET and apprenticeship reform efforts in Europe (statement URL) and hope that these will be taken up in the good work that will be done through the Alliance for Apprenticeships.

For more information, please contact:
About CEEMET and industriAll European Trade Union:
CEEMET (Council of European Employers of the Metal, Engineering and Technology-Based Industries) is the European employers’ organisation representing the interests of the metal, engineering and technology-based industries from 23 countries. Through its national member organisations it represents 200 000 companies across Europe. The vast majority of them are SMEs, providing over 13 million jobs of direct employment.
industriAll European Trade Union represents 7.1 million workers across supply chains in manufacturing, mining and energy sectors on European level.




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