Statement from Sarah Hathaway, head of ACCA UK:
“ACCA welcomes the boost in apprenticeships announced by the business secretary. It is especially heartening to see that they are linked to professions not normally associated with apprenticeships. It is important that the government, employers and professions work together to raise the standing of vocational qualifications and apprenticeships, especially in light to the growing cost of going to university. As a professional accountancy body, ACCA UK is behind this campaign 100% - we have signed up as Apprenticeship Trailblazers, which is a group of employers designing new Apprenticeship standards for relevant sector occupations. With business backing this, we hope it will be a success.
“It is vital for the future of the UK economy that students who cannot afford to go to university are not seen by employers as lacking ability. If we are to achieve a truly socially mobile population we must improve access to the professions for everyone that has the required ability. The announcement by Vince Cable is certainly a step in the right direction but there is still much more that can and should be done.”