Skills & Education Plan

Our ambition: to put employers at the heart of inspiring and informing all our residents about career and progression opportunities and making the curriculum fit for purpose.

Cheshire and Warrington is a highly successful economy. Our economic output is greater than that of the core cities. We have world leading businesses, in world leading sectors such as AstraZenica, Bentley Motors, Unilever and Jungheinrich. However, challenges lie ahead. If we are to maintain productivity we need to replace our ageing highly skilled workforce (230,000 jobs by 2025) and address the deficit of up to 60,000 graduates and the challenge of 25% of workers earning below the living wage and many working on unstable low hours contracts. We are losing 5,000 graduates each year and we have a clear mis-match between the skills employers need and the skills individuals choose to acquire. This is because not enough people get the information they need to make informed decisions about the subjects to study and the careers to follow. This is particularly true for STEM and Digital skills.

This is the Skills and Education Plan that has been developed by the LEP’s Employers’ Skills and Education Board in consultation with local partners. The Skills and Education Plan sets out plans for working with businesses and skills and learning providers to ensure that our businesses have the skills they need to grow and individuals have the skills they need to progress. The Plan is a working document. It builds on the good practice that is already happening in Cheshire and Warrington but also proposes a more innovative approach that puts employers at the heart of the plan.

It will evolve over time as we make progress and will be delivered in partnership with the local authorities and local training and education providers including delivery partners such as Warrington & Co and the Skills and Growth Company. The LEP will also focus the use of its investment funds on our skills, learning and education priorities and identify opportunities for joint investments between the public, private and voluntary sectors. Skills and learning cannot be tackled in isolation. Individuals with the greatest challenges and further from the labour market need to be offered a holistic service as part of the inclusive growth and reform of public services programmes.

Much work has been undertaken with employers to address our skills, learning and education challenges and to integrate these outcomes with the other enablers of inclusive growth.

Download the full plan here.