Agenda item

H&F Industrial Strategy

This item covers how the Council’s Industrial Strategy is being used to improve opportunities for young people in the borough.



Tom Perrigo (Industrial Strategy Officer) and Matthew Coulbeck (Secondary Adviser and 14-25 Development) introduced the item that covered how the Council’s Industrial Strategy was being used to improve opportunities for young people in the borough.


Councillor Lucy Richardson asked how the Council was working with businesses to use unspent apprenticeship levy funding and encouraging local businesses to offer inclusive apprenticeships. Tom Perrigo said officers were looking at options to use unspent levy money through a transfer scheme that the London Progression Collaboration were running. The scheme was designed to give smaller and medium sized businesses access to funding and enable them to create apprenticeship opportunities. Further details could be provided to the Committee as it progressed.

ACTION: Tom Perrigo


Councillor Richardson noted how important it was to create opportunities for young people to get the required English and Maths qualifications if they had failed them in school as it prevented them from accessing many of these opportunities. Officers agreed and said work was being done with West London College and other providers.


Councillor Richardson asked how T Levels were progressing in the borough. Matthew Coulbeck said it was still in the early stages. It was still not clear how T Levels would replace BTEC qualifications, which were strongly embedded in the borough with West London College, William Morris, and other providers. It was important that any change didn’t reduce participation.


Councillor Richardson asked if the change would put more pressure on teachers. Matthew Coulbeck said it would.


Nandini Ganesh welcomed the initiative. She noted that her son had been working in an inclusive apprenticeship as an admin assistant in the Economy department and was doing well. She asked officers to ensure the Council was promoting and supporting inclusive internships across a range of organisations and businesses.


Matt Jenkins asked what the Council could do to increase quality work experience opportunities. Matthew Coulbeck said work experience was difficult to manage for schools. It was costly for schools to find placements. The Council had set-up a careers network and careers cluster to help with this, allowing schools to connect with different organisations that could help them.


Councillor Asif Siddique asked how the Council was reaching out to small businesses who were interested in offering work experience but put off by onerous requirements around insurance etc. Matthew Coulbeck said small and medium sized businesses could contact Workzone for advice and support.


Councillor Richardson asked if officers had looked at skill mapping. Tom Perrigo said officers were looking at procuring a career and skills advice tool to help guide people by both assessing their skills and tracking which skills, technologies, and approaches were most in demand.


Councillor Larry Culhane (Cabinet Member for Children and Education) paid tribute to Tom Perrigo, Matthew Coulbeck, and the rest of the team. He said the Council’s industrial strategy was at forefront of change, improving opportunities for everyone in the borough. He also noted that the H&F Education Project Team had been highly commended at the LGC Awards for their work on climate education. He thanked Jan Parnell and her team.


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