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Kent County Council aims to boost the image of apprenticeships

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Kent County Council is to heavily invest in getting more young people on apprenticeships in a bid to improve the job prospects of young people over the next four years as the UK recovers from the recession.

The overall aim is to make the “matching would-be apprentices to local business” a much simpler and uncomplicated process as well as improving the image and perception of apprenticeships.

The council plans on encouraging employers to recruit prospective apprentices in line with the academic calendar so that there is an easy transference from school to employment, greater collaboration with schools to promote apprenticeships and helping small businesses overcome hurdles to taking on apprentices.

Mike Hill, the council”s cabinet member for customer and community services, said that apprenticeships made a real difference to the careers of young people and the “prosperity” of local businesses.

He added: “But we have to recognise and remove the obstacles which are preventing some people from discovering those benefits. We’ve set ourselves some ambitious targets but we are serious about making apprenticeships work in Kent.”

Apprenticeships are seen as an effective way of tackling youth unemployment, which, for 16-24-year-olds, stands at 895,000 (19 per cent).