UK Response to enhancing skills Essay
UK Response to enhancing skills
The Lisbon Agenda is a programme brought by the EU (A8, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia) to make Europe competitive in the economic and knowledge- driven world today by 2010. It was initiated in 2000 but due to failure of several related procedures was delayed and relaunched in 2005. Specifically UK’s target set is for it to become competitive in the global economy, looking at where it’ll be in the investment in skills and strategies for employment.
UK aims to create a balance of fiscal sustainability and funds for welfare allowing ageing population to be a part of this equation and making Britain a knowledge-driven society by giving more young people necessary education, training (skills) where the 25plus and 50 plus making either education or employment a realistic opportunity channelled through the emergence of innovation, technology, speed of learning, getting people off benefits.
I will be looking at what measures should be taken to tackle why UK isn’t meeting its own target already set of 80% of population being in employment, looking at New Deal as the main force in getting people equipped with skills, training or education needed for employment and why its lacking in meeting the fundamental principle of the programme brought, complying together with the National Reform Programme which came about to reform, review and evaluate the current policies to make UK more productive in the labour market and to the current economy to also make individuals less dependant upon the welfare state.
New Deal was launched in 1998 to help people especially the youth to acquire the necessary skills, training and education (basic literacy and numeracy skills) with the intention of getting people off benefits and into the workforce. I Hope to show how far New Deal has done this. Looking at how New Deal lacks in implementing the fundamental reasoning of why it was initiated.
UK Position Current UK employment rate is 71.6% though this figure isn’t transparent it still requires further insight into how many of the adults of this percentage who have acquired the skills necessary to be employable as a result of the reforms, specifically to the New Deal programme. And the speed with which they did so taking into account how many times they had joined the programme and achieved their goal of acquisition of array of necessary skills to be employable. 56. 2% is the current rate of employment for ‘older people’.
New Deal since its launch in 1998 helped 1. 4 million people, of which 620,000 is not acclaimed for. Figures only show 560,000 young people helped into employment and 220,000 unemployed adults. But three groups remain disabled, lone parents and ‘older people’. 65. 6% of women have been helped into employment, however it is difficult to relate this to New Deal as very few women had joined New Deal during 2001 in Scotland and UK especially had fewer females joining New Deal compared to males.
New Deal has had to have numerous reforms in view of increasing the labour force with productive and well adapted employees yet there is no evidence or any statistics in the Lisbon Agenda (for growth and jobs) report of long term unemployment for the last seven years and counting, it shows the figures for the last 30 years, but the figures are only for Northern Ireland it doesn’t show figures for the UK. Tony Blair in his labour conference speech this year (06) stressed ‘it’s not the last 10-30 years we need to look at but how competitive we’re going to be in the next 10 years’.
The reason for having the Lisbon Agenda was for Europe and more specifically for Britain to be the most competitive knowledge-driven economy globally. According to labour market trends 2001, key findings of New Deal 25 plus (for June 2006) were that the extent of satisfaction varied according to labour market and New Deal status at the time of the survey interview (1). [That is if the labour market demand was high New Deal would be more likely to work but if we were to concentrate on scrapping a programme or amending it without focusing on current trends and high supply of the labour market we wouldn’t be meeting the individual needs.
] New Deal isn’t ‘personally tailored to individual needs’ as it sets out to be. And though there is a move to increase the labour force, growth of jobs New Deal isn’t doing enough to equip the claimants to be applicable and approachable to the growing labour market. UK realises there is a link between inefficiency of the labour market and ethnic minority being unemployed however 89% of the white population are joining New Deal only 11% are from ethnic minority background (Source ‘Evaluation of Targeted Initiatives, published 03Nov06)(2).
According to figures from Department for Employment and Learning provided by Targeted Initiatives teams in July 2006 outcomes of New Deal in Northern Ireland are that out of 657 only 219 participants of New Deal entered employment that’s significantly less than half(3). The figures don’t show how many entered employment as a result of completing the 50 weeks on New Deal, as an estimate from the attached figures only 159 out of 657 entered employment as a result of completing course with New Deal.
How then is my question to New Deal, have the reforms been effective? UK’s main targets are to increase number of people in higher education by 50% for 18-30 alongside to cut down on the number of people who don’t complete their education. To increase number of adults with skills required for employment to progress to higher levels of training this is to be done by improving basic skill levels in Literacy and numeracy of 2. 25 million adults between 2001-2010. For there to be 1 million adults in the workforce with level 2 qualification between 2003-2006.
University/College: University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 10 July 2017