Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Skill shortages

General Election

The Liberal Democrats and Conservatives have slightly different approaches, although Kennedy for the LibDems made more of efforts to make universities more accessible to bright students on low incomes.

He promises to scrap tuition fees, 'enabling access to be based on ability, not ability to pay'.

Labour claims to be addressing the issue through investment in further education. 'We've tripled apprenticeships and increased the number of graduates by 200,000, ' says Quinn.

Howard and Kennedy made much of efforts to boost vocational training.

Howard says the Conservatives would spend £20M on a bursary scheme for students studying key subjects including engineering. 'Around 10,000 students would receive a £2,000 bursary on completion of their studies, ' he says.

Conservative policy would also develop vocational skills among 14 to 16 year olds. This would involve 'transforming the vocational alternatives available to them, helping them to gain the skills that fit their abilities and interests'. And he promises vocational grants for studies leading to alternatives to GCSE qualifications.

Kennedy also promises more vocational courses for 14 to 19 year olds, while supporting Labour's four year commitment to spend £350M on colleges by 2009/10.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.