Commenting in response to the Sainsbury Panel Report and Government Post-16 Skills Plan, Marcus Mason, Head of Education and Skills at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said:

“Businesses want high-quality and easy to understand technical routes that rival the academic option, and the Sainsbury Report and Skills Plan go some way in setting out how this can be achieved. If streamlined and clearly signposted, technical routes will bring clarity to a system which is often confusing to businesses and students alike.

“The government needs to make sure these new technical routes are relevant and aligned to business needs and employment outcomes. Only then will they be truly valued by firms and students. Businesses are faced with an ever-growing skills shortage, and any change that seeks to shift the dynamic will be supported by companies across the country.

“However, previous reforms have often been hampered by continuous revolution and change, rather than allowing policies time to take hold. If these reforms have permanence, then the long-term stability they generate will gain buy-in and trust from all sides.”