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Vocational Training: Oxfordshire

Volume 468: debated on Monday 26 November 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many (a) companies and (b) organisations in Oxfordshire have signed the Skills Pledge. (167174)

The Skills Pledge is a voluntary public commitment by the leadership of a company or organisation to support all its employees to develop their basic skills including literacy and numeracy, and work towards relevant valuable qualifications to at least level 2 (equivalent to five good GCSEs). If companies or organisations want to go beyond this and extend the commitment to help staff gain wider skills and additional qualifications as well that is welcome. The Skills Pledge is open to all employers in England.

As at November 2007, the available information indicated that there were six companies or organisations in Oxfordshire which have signed the Skills Pledge. We do not collect separate information on companies or organisations.

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills how many Train to Gain places have been made available in the (a) Banbury and (b) Oxford travel to work areas. (167175)

Train to Gain is a major aspect of the drive to create a demand-led service and does not generate places in the traditional sense. Through Train to Gain, employers can access the advice and support they need to help them identify and then meet the skills their businesses need to succeed. We do not collect information on travel to work areas. In the first year of its operation, there were a total of 853 learners funded through Train to Gain in the wards of Banbury and Oxford. The breakdown was as follows: Banbury 433, East Oxford 302 and West Oxford 118.