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Education system must meet skills needs - Archibald

2 August, 2019 - by Caoimhe Archibald

Sinn Féin MLA Caoimhe Archibald has said there is a need to ensure the education system can provide students with the skills needed to enter the economy.

Speaking on the most recent update of the Skills Barometer, the party's further and higher education spokesperson said, 

"There is a need to use evidence and forecasting such as the Skills Barometer to shape and inform policy.

"Yet again the biggest demand is for STEM skills and in particular for people qualified in IT and engineering subjects. 

“Languages, history and philosophy, and creative subjects have also been highlighted as being in demand over the next ten years.  

"There is a shortage of people with so-called mid-tier qualifications at NQF levels 3, 4 and 5.  

"This isn't new information and it needs to be acted upon. The ongoing 14-19 review is one opportunity to do this.

"Interestingly it is also coming through that employers are concerned about the employability skills of those in the job market.  

“There are gaps in skills such as teamwork, communication and punctuality, and work experience needs to be built into courses and training.

“The report points up the need for proper careers advice and information to be made available.  

“This is something we hear time and again from young people, education providers and employers. We need to see effective delivery of up to date and relevant careers advice embedded throughout the education system.

"There is a need to develop policy and to take action to ensure we have a fit for purpose education system that provides both academic and professional and technical education to meet the needs of people as well as the economy." 

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