QQI has welcomed a new Action Plan for Apprenticeship launched today by the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris TD.
The Action Plan for Apprenticeship 2021-2025 outlines a strategy to deliver 10,000 apprenticeship registrations annually over a five-year period. The plan is focussed on responding to skills delivery for industry needs and improving the experience of both employers and learners. Key elements of the plan include:
- supports for employers to engage with apprenticeship schemes;
- better information for learners seeking information about apprenticeships;
- a central National Apprenticeship Office to bring together existing expertise across the system; and
- a National Apprenticeship Alliance to include the voices of all stakeholders.
QQI will have a significant role in supporting the implementation of this plan, specifically in the following areas:
- a review of the apprenticeship quality assurance framework;
- the implementation of a partner-led system of programme governance in collaboration with the Higher Education Authority and SOLAS;
- review of the role of Authorised Officers in partnership with the newly-established National Apprenticeship Office;
- support for the development of Quality Assurance with future consortia; and
- supporting the migration of all apprenticeships to a single system.
Dr Padraig Walsh, CEO of QQI said,
“QQI welcomes the ambition outlined in the new Action Plan for Apprenticeship launched today by Minister Simon Harris. We are encouraged by the continued focus on quality assurance in ensuring the best possible experience for apprentices in this important and growing area. With our unique perspective on education and training across the entire tertiary system, we look forward to working with our partners on reviewing and improving quality across the sector.
QQI has awarded 10,218 apprentices since 2015. We have validated 34 apprenticeship programmes, 30 of which are Further Education and Training apprenticeship programmes, 4 are Higher Education and Training apprenticeship programmes.