On Tuesday the Secretary of State announced a new skills White Paper. The White Paper demonstrates the Government's commitment to improving the skills of employees to meet the current and future needs of employers and further strengthen our productivity and competitiveness in a global marketplace. Recently we also launched our 14 to 19 proposals.
I reassure my hon. Friend that that will be the case. We have a journey to travel in vocational education, but we ought to celebrate the fact that this year we have a record 270,000 young people participating in apprenticeships, 100,000 young people studying GCSEs in vocational studies, and 90,000 young people participating in the 14-to-16 increased flexibility programme. With the unveiling of the national skills academies only this week, we are beginning to build an infrastructure that will give us excellent high-quality vocational education for the first time.
It is also important to focus on the significant additional resources for investment in further education that the Chancellor announced in the Budget. We can now bring together the skills academies, centres of vocational excellence and specialist schools.