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Employability Skills

Volume 472: debated on Wednesday 5 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how his Department is monitoring the progress of the Employability Skills programme which his Department announced on 1st August 2007. (185830)

I have been asked to reply.

Progress in implementing the Employability Skills Programme is currently reported into the Department of Innovation Universities and Skills (DIUS), Skills for Life programme Board. This Board will monitor reports from the Learning and Skills Council on progress against success criteria for the programme. Data will be made available on a quarterly basis via the data book.

Development of the programme has been overseen by a Steering Group comprising representatives from DIUS, DWP, LSC and JCP.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much it has cost to implement the Employability Skills programme which his Department announced on 1 August 2007. (185831)

I have been asked to reply.

The Employability Skills Programme is an LSC funded programme, £23 million is available to support learner's achievements in literacy, language and numeracy qualifications and to get a basic level employability qualification. DWP are further supporting learners with £14 million for Training Allowance.

DIUS has supported development of the programme with £310,000 which has funded:

Develop, set-up and support for 9 Pathfinders trials in each of the Government Office regions.

Develop and delivery of training for JCP advisers and Programme Providers.

Development and dissemination of information and promotional materials for JCP customers, advisers and programme providers.

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people his Department estimates have found employment as a consequence of participating in the Employability Skills programme which his Department announced on 1st August 2007. (185832)

I have been asked to reply.

Success in the Employability Skills Programme is measured in a number of ways, including achievement of literacy, language and numeracy qualifications, achievements of an employability certificate in addition to job outcomes.

Provision typically lasts 15 weeks and in that time Training Providers work with local Jobcentre Plus offices to try to identify suitable job opportunities and ideally to find work with training.

We expect the LSC to report on the full range of success criteria including qualifications and job outcomes at quarterly reviews, the first set of data to end of February 2008 will be reported at the quarterly review in April 2008.