Falkirk East MSP Cathy Peattie has called on the Scottish Government to provide more investment for work-based training in Community Learning and Development, highlighting the work of the local Linked Work and Training Trust Central.
The Minister has agreed to facilitate a meeting on the issue with the Funding Council.
Speaking in the Scottish Parliament, Cathy Peattie asked the Minister “what support is being provided for apprenticeships and work-based training in community learning and development.”
The Minister, Keith Brown, admitted that “there is currently no specific community learning and development modern apprenticeship framework.” but noted that “organisations delivering CLD may access support for apprentices undertaking other frameworks such as learning and development, management and business administration. The Scottish Government has supported the development of work-based training in community learning and development and is committed to ensuring flexible provision that builds a skilled and confident CLD workforce.”
In a supplementary question, Cathy Peattie asked: “Given its importance in delivering the Scottish community empowerment action plan, better community engagement and effective partnership working with Scottish communities, will the Scottish Executive explore with the Scottish Further and Higher Education Funding Council how investment in work-based training, such as the training that is provided by Linked Work and Training Trust Central can be better supported?”
The Minister replied: “I congratulate Cathy Peattie on her recent appointment to an Opposition spokesperson’s post. I recognise the work that she has done with the Linked Work and Training Trust Central, which obviously also covers my area. There are potentially two routes through which this could be progressed. One is through Skills Development Scotland and the apprenticeship model. As Cathy Peattie said, it could also be progressed through the funding council. There are issues to do with that. The funding council currently designates as part-time students people who are taking the bachelor of arts in community learning and development degree programme, so it does not attract funding. As I have spoken with Cathy Peattie already, I am happy to facilitate a further discussion with her, me and the funding council, if that would be helpful.”
Cathy said that she had spoken to the Minister before the interchange in the chamber.
“I’m pleased to say that he is supportive. This is an important form of training with great potential for expansion, so I am hoping that the Scottish Government will use its influence and resources to make sure that it is better supported.”
Cathy is a longstanding supporter of work-based training in general and the local Linked Work and Training Trust Central in particular, and is currently the Convener of the Trust (an unremunerated post).