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New partnership agreement gives London’s National Skills Academies for Construction a major boost

In a major collaborative effort to support employer-led training in the capital, a London Construction Providers Partnership (LCPP) has been established. The Partnership will deliver the training for all National Skills Academy for Construction projects, including the Kings Cross redevelopment and all Olympic sites.

In a move that has not been seen since the early 1990s, a network of both public and private training providers will now work in partnership - rather than competition - to offer consistently high quality assessment methods. The Partnership will give employers unprecedented access to the educational supply chain and make it simpler for them to make decisions about training provision.

Large scale projects that gain National Skills Academy for Construction status – a new project based, employer-led model for training – will now benefit from access to 25 colleges and private providers, ensuring that all their training requirements can be met within the M25.

Signing the agreement in central London on 3 June, the training providers will also guarantee employers:

    ● Consistently high level of delivery from each and every provider.

    ● Consistent assessment methods from each provider ensuring trainees in the same discipline across London have the same skill set.

    ● A list of quality assured suppliers that will save time when researching which providers to choose.

Frank Horan, Chair of the London Construction Providers’ Partnership and London Regional Chair of the British Association of Construction Heads, sums up the main issue:
“Ever since the incorporation of colleges in 1992 and the subsequent opening up of training provision, private sector providers gained the opportunity to bid for government funded training which meant providers have, in competition, jealously guarded the work they do and the clients they serve.

Frank continues: “Our research showed that, in partnership, all national qualification levels from 2 to 5 could be made available to the National Skills Academy for Construction and that the range of specialist training would cover the majority, if not all training needs. It also showed that, through partnership, the critical mass of expertise and physical resource available would support the development and delivery of customised training required by many large projects where traditional clusters of skills do not meet construction needs. This is a huge step forward for employer-led training.”

Peter Lobban, Chief Executive, ConstructionSkills, comments: “Despite the current slowdown in some areas of the construction industry, growth is set to rise strongly in London over the next 5-10 years to deliver the region’s projects. This new partnership will really boost the way employers are able to train new recruits and will be a huge boost to the National Skills Academy for Construction model. It is unique to London, but we will do our best to ensure its success and will hopefully see similar partnerships set up in the rest of the UK in the future.”

Giving the employer viewpoint, Jeremy Galpin, Group Skills and Development Manager, The Costain Group, adds: “The Costain Group is delighted with the new partnership. As a major employer it means we have a single point of contact and we can use this to influence the educational supply chain in London. Those providing training and education to National Skills Academies for Construction are demonstrating their commitment in direct response to employer needs.”

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