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Foundation Apprenticeships: Early progress and learning insights

Foundation Apprenticeships (FA) were first introduced in 2014. They provide work-based learning (WBL) opportunities for secondary school pupils making their senior phase subject choices. Fas have been designed and developed with industry and Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA), and are aligned to key sectors of the economy with current skills shortages and projected future jobs growth. Strong international evidence from economies that perform well suggests that softening the divide between academic and WBL is pivotal to the design of future skills systems. Fas address this by offering a blend of academic and WBL for young people in the senior phase of secondary school. They are designed to foster seamless pathways between academic and WBL opportunities, and multiple progression routes on completion. The FA programme is delivered through partnerships between schools, a local college or learning provider, and local employers. Fas provide industry-recognised qualifications in key sectors where there is a real need for skilled employees. Fas are based on existing and successful, industry-endorsed, Modern Apprenticeship frameworks and they enable pupils to complete elements of a Modern Apprenticeship while still in school. This is the first report specific to the Foundation Apprenticeship programme. As the programme is very new, and in its initial phases of roll-out, data is provided to describe its early evolution.