By Claire West

The term ‘apprenticeship’ will be protected in law, the government has announced yesterday (14 June 2015). This will strengthen their reputation, help working people and ensure apprenticeships are recognised as a career path equal to higher education.

With over 2.2 million apprenticeships created since 2010 to help establish the UK as the fastest growing economy in the G7, the government will also enshrine in law its commitment to create 3 million apprenticeships by 2020.

With apprenticeships giving hope and opportunity to more young people, and helping all types and sizes of businesses grow in communities across the UK, the Skills Minister will legally protect the term ‘apprenticeship’ through the Enterprise Bill. This will give government the power to take action when the term is misused to promote low quality courses.

To ensure that more young people can benefit the minister has also announced that public bodies will now be set targets to take on more apprentices. Schools, hospitals, prisons and police forces will all be creating opportunities for young people to get on.

Skills Minister Nick Boles said:

If university graduates have their moment in the sun so should people who undertake apprenticeships. Businesses know their value so it’s high time they were recognised both by the public and in law as being equal to degrees.

We want far more employers to get involved in apprenticeships. This means making sure that we practise what we preach in government, so we’re going require all public sector bodies — schools, hospitals, prisons and police forces — to employ apprentices.