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LAUNCH OF SECTOR SKILLS BODY FOR CENTRAL GOVERNMENT

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'Government Skills' - The Sector Skills Council for Central Government is being launched today. It has been created...
'Government Skills' - The Sector Skills Council for Central Government is being launched today. It has been created to focus on the skills needed to improve delivery in central government.

An employer-led organisation, Government Skills has support from across the central government sector, bringing together all Government departments including their Executive Agencies, Non-departmental Public Bodies and the Armed forces.

The launch will bring all these stakeholders together at an event in Central London. Speakers include Phil Hope MP, Minister for Skills and Sir Richard Mottram, Chair of Government Skills. There will be further events to promote the work of Government Skills across the UK in the coming weeks and months.

Government Skills is one of 25 Sector Skills Councils (SSCs). These make up the Skills for Business network. The aim of the network is to boost the productivity and profitability of the UK. The network is supported by the Sectors Skills Development Agency.

The Department for Education and Skills has overall responsibility for the skills development strategy in the UK.

Education and Skills Secretary Ruth Kelly said:

'Skills are the key to personal and economic growth.

'This is the last Sector Skills Council in the network of 25 set up under the Government's skills strategy. Now employers have a powerful voice in closing skills gaps for productivity in every major sector of the economy.

'With the infrastructure complete and Sector Skills Agreements being put into place we are delivering a truly demand-led system to help people get the training they need where and when it suits them best.'

Government Skills will work on behalf of central government in the following areas:

* Professional Skills for Government - ensuring its successful delivery across the Civil Service.

* Standards and Qualifications - developing the necessary professional and occupational standards and qualifications to improve delivery

* Workforce data - using workforce intelligence and information to underpin business plans and give junior staff and under-represented groups fair access to training and development

* Skills Needs - work closely with employers to address skills needs and achieve best value

* Cross Sector Development - work with Skills for Business Network and other public service Sectors Skills Councils to address common skills needs

Sir Richard Mottram, Chair of Government Skills said: 'Launching Government Skills will help central government in its aim to become more effective through identifying and addressing the skills employees and organisations need to improve delivery both now and in the future.

'Our immediate priorities in the work programmes include supporting Departments in rolling out Professional Skills for Government to all levels of the Civil Service. We are keen to engage all our employers in our work programmes and the launch and subsequent promotional events are the first steps in doing this. I am very pleased that our Council includes the Armed Forces given their excellent record on training and development which we can all learn from.'

The Sector Skills Council will have staff in London and soon also in the regions and devolved administrations to ensure effective links with regional stakeholders and labour markets.

Government Skills will be funded by the SSDA and the Cabinet Office

Note

1. For more information on Government Skills go to www.government-skills.gov.uk

2. For more information on the Sector Skills Development Agency and the Skills for Business network go to www.ssda.org.uk

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