A dyslexic teenager who struggled to find his feet at school is now excelling in his new career as a Plastering apprentice, thanks to Skills Group’s learn2work programme.
After leaving school at 16, Jordan Newport of West Park, Plymouth, joined Devon-based Skills Group and began the learn2work programme in Construction.
Learn2work is a full-time, pre-apprenticeship course specifically designed to prepare youngsters to take on an apprenticeship or employment in a specific industry sector.
The aim is to develop the necessary skills needed to get a job in a given profession. The course also includes Maths, English, ICT, Health & Safety, and First Aid – all of which employers say are critical to workplace success.
A key part of the course is a work placement with a local employer, so participants can get first-hand experience of working. Once completed, Skills Group matches learners with a local employer that has an apprenticeship vacancy.
Skills Group is celebrating the success of its learn2work programme, with more than 40 Construction students being taken this year. All of the youngsters who have completed the Construction course have since been employed as apprentices by Skills Group employers – a 100% success rate.
Jordan, who is now working as an apprentice for C&P Plastering Ltd in Plymouth, said: “Nothing really clicked for me at school, I found it hard. I had reading problems and all sorts, and the school didn’t really help me.
“Then I got involved with Skills Group and did the learn2work in Construction. That course helped me with everything, including my English, and it really boosted my confidence. Now I’m working as a plastering apprentice and feel much happier. I know I have a support network behind me.”
Paul Pomeroy, Director of C&P Plastering Ltd, said Jordan had excelled at developing his hand skills and that he was delighted with his progression.
Paul said: “Jordan is a really great lad and we always work in teams so this has greatly built his confidence.
Skills Group apprentices are way ahead of the game when it comes to additional skills. We help our apprentices as much as we possibly can at C&P, to ensure they are equipped with the latest skills in the trade.”
Skills Group’s learn2work programme is available in the Construction, Child Care, Engineering and Automotive, Hairdressing and Sport and Leisure sectors.
Mandy Kerslake, Skills Group’s apprenticeship manager, said: “For a youngster who finds school difficult, whatever the reasons, knowing what to do when they leave can be very hard, and not everyone is ready to step into the workplace as soon as they’ve finished their GCSEs.
“Our Learn2Work programme gives them the foundation they need to get on the career ladder. It focuses on industry specific skills as well as helping them develop key employability skills. Students can start at any time during the year, and as soon as they are ready we will encourage them to undertake a work placement, and support them through it.
“We designed learn2work to help get youngsters into apprenticeships, and are obviously delighted with our 100% success rate!”
Learners are given their own uniform, any personal protection equipment and a training kit free of charge. They are also entitled to claim a travel allowance for attending the Skills Group training centre, and are given a free breakfast to kick-start their day.
Pictured: Jordan Newport, who is now working as an apprentice plasterer with C&P Plastering Ltd.