Press Release

Committee Begins Scrutiny of Training for Success

Session: 2007/2008

Date: Wednesday, 10 October 2007

Reference: EL 03/07

Northern Ireland’s new vocational training programme, Training for Success, will be monitored by the Assembly Committee for Employment and Learning.

The Committee announced today that it will embark on the scrutiny exercise to address the early stage roll out of the Department of Employment and Learning’s key new training programme.

Training for Success began operation on 3 September this year and replaces Jobskills as the Department’s primary vocational training programme.

The Committee’s Chairperson Sue Ramsey said:

“Training for Success is one of the major policy programmes initiated under the new devolved administration. It is extremely important that the Department for Employment and Learning delivers a programme of high quality training and provides the best opportunities for our young people to acquire the training and skills they need to obtain gainful lasting employment.”

Ms Ramsey continued:

“The Committee considers that the Department has worked extremely hard to address the Westminster Public Accounts Committee’s criticisms of the previous Jobskills programme. It is the duty of our Committee to ensure that the Department delivers on this programme so that we have the skills to meet the significant economic challenges ahead. Although the programme is in its initial stages, it is important that we get involved early to ensure that Training for Success delivers on the needs of both trainees and employers.”

The scrutiny process is expected to be completed by March 2008 when the Committee’s findings will be reported to the Assembly.

Notes to Editors:
  1. The Training for Success Programme replaced the Jobskills Programme from 3 September 2007 and was developed as the result of criticism of Jobskills by the Public Accounts Committee in its report of 2005. Criticisms included the quality of training, low retention and progression rates, the apparent employer exploitation of young people undertaking work placements as part of their training and the low net employment impact.
  2. The Committee’s Objective is to:

    “Fully monitor and scrutinise the early stage roll out and delivery of the Department for Employment Learning’s new Training for Success programme and recommend any policy or process changes which it considers will improve the programme delivery.

    In meeting this objective, the Committee will address the following terms of reference:

    (a) To ensure that the providers of the training programmes are fully equipped (staff and resources) to deliver the highest quality training within their particular sector;

    (b) To ensure that the geographical coverage and access arrangements allow for trainees to pursue their chosen training path;

    (c) To ensure that Training for Success is firmly aligned to the needs of local industry and business sectors; and

    (d) To ensure that the new arrangements for training provision under Training for Success adhere to the highest employee and resource management standards.

  3. The Committee will carry out the scrutiny exercise by means of evidence gathering (oral and written) over the coming months and it is proposed to report its findings to the Assembly prior to the Easter recess on 15 th March 2008. The Committee may also wish to make specific recommendations to the Department of Employment and Learning as it progresses through the scrutiny programme.
  4. Enquiries about the work of the Committee for Employment and Learning should be directed to the Clerk to the Committee, Room 283, Parliament Buildings, Stormont, Belfast BT4 3XX, Tel: 028 9052 1653 or email:
  5. Media enquiries regarding the work of Committees should be directed to:

Northern Ireland Assembly Information Office, Room B2, Parliament Buildings, Belfast, BT4 3XX; Telephone 028 9052 1137; Website:; E-mail:

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