Sector Skills Councils set for April start-up

five new Sector Skills Councils (SSC) replacing the National Training
Organisations should be up and running in around three months, according to the
Department for Education and Skills (DfES).

Healey, the minister for adult skills, told Personnel Today that the five
trailblazer SSCs are in consultation with the government to iron out details:
“I’d be very disappointed if we hadn’t got the trailblazers up and running by
April. We are already looking at the next phase and at other sectors which may
want an SSC," he said.

current system will end in March and the SSCs will draw on a partnership
between employers in each sector.

five sectors chosen to be part of the SSC trailblazer scheme are:


Land-based industries (including farming, agriculture, forestry and rural

Audio visual industries

Apparel, footwear and textiles

Oil and gas extraction; petroleum refining and distribution; and chemical

than 31 industries had expressed an interest in obtaining an SSC but the
government chose the five which had the most backing from employers.

advisors are also working with other sectors and advising on how employers can
get involved to help create future new councils.

also criticised the NTO system for being marginal and having too little
influence: "You have to look at the skills gap and then at the overall
performance of the NTOs. Only 8 per cent of employers had even heard of them.

were too small and didn’t have enough influence," he said.

By Ross Wigham

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