Hockley Mint aims to set new standards for jewellery apprenticeships

Jewellery standard

Jewellery manufacturer Hockley Mint is establishing a new industry panel of employers with the aim of setting new standards for manufacturing apprenticeships.

It is to be established under the chairmanship of Gary Wroe, managing director of Hockley Mint in Birmingham.

Its purpose will be to steer the development of a new Trailblazer Apprenticeship Standard for jewellery manufacturing in the UK. Supported by the National Association of Jewellers, the Goldsmiths’ Company and British Academy of Jewellery the panel will agree both the new standard and its end point assessment with the new Institute for Apprenticeships (IfA).

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Triggered by the launch of the IfA and the introduction of the Employer Apprenticeship Levy to support training costs, the new standards represent a seismic shift in how apprenticeships will be funded and delivered in the future.

Wroe explained: “The new Jewellery Manufacturing Standard represents an opportunity to reshape how apprenticeships are delivered in our sector. The change in emphasis from a provider (education) based model to one that is truly led by employers is immensely significant. This will mean that for the first time in many years that the people paying the wages of apprentices will have control of the training that they receive off the job.

“I am a passionate believer in the need to educate the next generation of young people for our industry. It is an honour to have the opportunity to be chairman of an industry panel that will be considering the development of a new apprenticeship standard for the sector. I have accepted this role and I am looking forward to other jewellers joining me in taking forward this important piece of work. It is important that we get the standard and levels of training right.”

While a number of business leaders have already been recruited contributions are sought from across the sector and country. The National Association of Jewellers (NAJ) will be coordinating this process and anyone who has an interest in contributing to the development of the new standard is asked to contact Kate Madelin, the NAJ’s director of education.

Kate Madelin commented: “This is an open and inclusive process and the employer panel would welcome input from all those who feel that they have a contribution to make to developing a robust and effective Standard”.

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