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Wednesday, 01 October 2014

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PROFESSOR CARY COOPER

SOME 50 business leaders attended a North West debate on the future of education.

The event was organised by the Institute of Directors NorthWest, Pro.Manchester and Deloitte.

The panel included IoD North West chairman Tony Attard, Lancaster University’s Professor Cary Cooper and Bryan Gray, Deloitte director Richard Barrett, Letty Newton of Manchester University’s Student Union and George McMillan of Kuit Steinart Levy.

IoD North West members posed questions, including asking whether the tuition fees rises would deter poorer students from applying for university and if changes would result in skills shortages in the employment market.

Darrell Matthews, IoD North West’s regional director, said: “This was an enthralling debate on what is a hugely important subject. Businesses have an obvious vested interest in higher education when they come to recruit the next generation of talent.

“However, it is in all our interests that the UK is a place where intelligent, hard-working people can get on in life, regardless of their background.”

A LEADING UK business organisation has welcomed the government’s new plans to support apprenticeships, but believes more can be done.

Susan Anderson, CBI director for education and skills, said: “At a time of record high youth unemployment, the introduction of a £1,500 incentive payment to small companies which take on young people is welcome news, but this should go further to include employers of any size. We’re calling on the government to introduce a Young Britain Credit which would encourage both small and medium-sized firms to recruit young Britons and support training of young people in larger firms.

“At the same time, the government must reduce the bureaucracy around taking on these new employees, especially regarding audit, inspection and data collection, so that the incentive payment does not get eaten up by these costs.”

The CBI said young people who failed to reach a good level in English and maths by the age of 16 need a variety of fresh approaches to help them, including more practical literacy and numeracy training which could be supported by apprenticeships.

Ms Anderson said: “We need to ensure they’re not subjected to more of the same when a school-based approach has failed in the past.”

TEACHERS looking for calmer classrooms, more tolerant, respectful and well-behaved pupils should introduce cricket, according to new research.

A report published by the Institute of Youth Sport at Loughborough University found that schoolchildren ‘developed important life skills such as leadership, teamwork and cooperation, through their participation in cricket.

The evaluation of ‘Chance to Shine supported by Brit Insurance’ examined how skills learnt in a competitive environment were transferred back to the classroom.

Teachers highlighted the development of pupils’ teamwork skills through increased competitive opportunities. They said pupils got on better with each other and were far more supportive of their peers.

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