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Education & Training

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Education & Training

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Education & Training

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Education & Training

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Education & Training

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Education & Training

Education and Training Providers

The contributions of the schools, colleges, universities and other training providers are essential to meet the needs of our local employers and people as outlined in the SEMLEP Growing People Skills Plan and the national Careers Strategy.

We work in partnership with The Careers and Enterprise Company to help young people reach their potential and attain the relevant skills, competencies and attainment ready for the world of work.

Our team of CEC Enterprise Coordinators work with schools and college leadership teams to build careers and employer engagement plans relevant to the labour market. Each school and college is matched to and supported by an Enterprise Adviser – a senior volunteer from business who helps unlock relationships with other local businesses.

The areas of focus are:

  • Embedding core competencies into curriculum
  • Employer engagements throughout school

SEMLEP's Enterprise Coordinators work with over 70% of mainstream schools and businesses in network groups in the South East Midlands. The Careers and Enterprise Company fund delivery of some careers provision within the participating schools.

“Putting in place a careers plan that meets the 8 Gatsby Benchmarks. SEMLEP guidance for CEIAG delivery aligned to local need and the Gatsby Benchmarks can be found here.”

If you would like to join the network or are interested in this activity and would like to know more, please contact SEMLEP’s Enterprise Coordinators:

Northamptonshire, Vikki Morton, 07568 428162,
Bedford and Central Bedfordshire, Peter Rayner, 07568 428159,
Milton Keynes and Luton, Deb Foster, 07712 673318,
Independent schools, Paul Thompson, 07989 401108,

Sign up to the monthly Enterprise Adviser Network newsletter here.

The Further Education South East Midlands (FuSE) group, comprising further education college principals, are focused on implementing recommendations from the Government’s South East Midlands further education area review alongside reviewing skills needs and priorities.

In addition, a SEMLEP FuSE Operational Group, focuses on delivery of relevant provision, skills and employer engagement including apprenticeships.

Employer engagement is sought by the colleges to support provision development, work experience and keeping up to date with developments in the workplace.

Contact details can be obtained from

Over £15m is invested, as part of SEMLEP’s Local Growth Fund allocation, to develop further education facilities and capacity to meet the skills needs of employers.

This includes:

For further information, go to the Growing People section of the South East Midlands Strategic Economic Plan.

Universities and their associated business schools are key to the UK’s economic wellbeing and have the exciting potential to support businesses in becoming more competitive and innovative.

The South East Midlands hosts a phenomenal array of world-leading education, learning and research assets that can, and do make a significant impact in helping businesses to improve product, service development and delivery. The area’s six high performing business schools and seven university campuses are open gateways for UK-based businesses who want to innovate to maximise their potential and, overseas investors seeking the optimum location for a new UK business base.

For details on SEMLEP’s capital investments, click on the Investments for Growing People below.

The universities offer the Higher, Degree and Masters level apprenticeships.

Cranfield University:
The Open University:
University of Bedfordshire:
The University of Buckingham:
University of Northampton:
Buckinghamshire New University:

Introductions and contact details for the universities can be obtained from

SEMLEP use Skills Forums to facilitate dialogue between training providers (including independent training providers, third sector organisations, agencies, local authorities adult education provision) with employers to discuss skills needs in growth sectors in order to inform and deliver the SEMLEP ‘Growing People’ Skills Plan.

The Skills Forum:

  • Provide training providers with detailed information and an understanding of employer needs in terms of skills, attainment and training to help highlight and inform development of relevant capacity and provision content
  • Provide training providers with labour market information
  • Apply focus on addressing discrepancies between the skills and attainment needed by employers and those held by individuals of all ages
  • Obtain feedback on challenges faced by training providers to highlight issues with other stakeholders
  • Highlight sources of funding and policy when they become available
  • Capture best practice and evidence of impact

If you would like to join our Forum please contact

Growing People Investments

This area details capital investments made by SEMLEP and ESIF-funded projects that support skills development and inclusion.

Read More

Building a talent pipeline

Business engagement with young people and school or college staff is core to the support SEMLEP provides to schools and FE Colleges.

The SEMLEP Growing People Skills Plan is a strategy for skills development from primary education to adults, embedding employer engagement and the use of digital labour market information. It comprises 6 phases:

> Aware (age 9-12) - Introduce the world of work in the South-East Midlands, nationally and globally, the benefits it offers, the importance of education and introduce the need for the development of skills and competencies

> Inspire, Aspire and Inform (11-16) - Showcase career opportunities in sectors including job types, earning potential, local company profiles, pathways for entry and where to study, relevance of competencies to sector and employer needs. Inspire young people and raise aspirations through role models, talks, site visits and mentoring.

> Develop basic numeracy and literacy (9-14) - Support school work and activity with employer engagement to highlight relevancy of subjects for future life. Use financial capability to boost numeracy.

> Develop Competencies (14-19) - Develop core competencies, sometimes referred to as ‘life’, ‘soft’ or ‘transferable’ skills through embedding their use within curriculum and subjects, work experience, enterprise activities, extra-curricular activities including volunteering

> Develop Key Employability Skills (+16) - Develop through vocational and technical education, apprenticeships, traineeships and study programme. For more academic pathways develop through work experience, internships and industrial placements.

> Continuous Development and Engagement (+19) - For those in employment, seeking employment or enabling those with barriers to overcome. Includes re-skilling, up-skilling and the development of managerial/leadership skills.

Northamptonshire Community Foundation

We commission our own Business Survey biannually and review data, reports and research produced by national bodies, partners or third parties to inform our strategy and delivery plans.

Understanding the specific needs in our local businesses and communities is essential in providing provision that will have impact. An example of the type of research available is the Northamptonshire Hidden Needs Report commissioned by Northamptonshire Community Foundation. The report explores the priority needs within the Northamptonshire communities, highlighting areas of deprivation and inequality that need support.

Should you require information on skills relating to business and employer needs or the local economy, please contact

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