Improving Education Standards

Part of Business of the House – in the House of Commons at 2:05 pm on 29th November 2018.

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Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers Conservative, Chipping Barnet 2:05 pm, 29th November 2018

I certainly agree with that last point, and I welcome the apprenticeship in cyber-security to which my hon. Friend referred. I am a member of the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy, and we recently published a report that highlighted big skills gaps in cyber-security, so I am pleased that Gloucestershire College is helping to fill those gaps.

My hon. Friend emphasises the role of the further education sector, but we must also recognise the great potential for the higher education and university sectors regarding apprenticeships. Middlesex University, near my constituency, is pioneering degree apprenticeships that combine the academic and technical in an innovative new form that could appeal to many young people. Apprenticeships deliver the combined benefit of broadening opportunities for young people while also improving the skills base for our economy to make us more competitive in the global race for jobs and investment.