TEENAGERS learning new skills as part of a vocational training scheme have been reassured that their positions are secure after fears that the scheme could be scrapped.
The Borough Environmental Training Scheme (BETS), operated as a partnership between 2010 Rotherham Ltd and Morthyng Training, sees unemployed young people who are not in full time education trained in landscaping and property maintenance.
But the recent tendering of some of the 2010 Rotherham’s roles to private firms has prompted concerns that new contractors may not continue with the scheme.
The father of one BETS trainee said: “A lot of young people who aren’t in full-time education have benefited greatly from the scheme and it would be a real shame if that didn’t continue.
“BETS gets young people out into the workplace and learning new skills. Though jobs are thin on the ground at the moment, it’s still important that the schemes continues.”
Through BETS, 90 young people have been brought into an employment and training environment over the last three years—60 per cent of whom have since found a full time college placement or employment.
There are currently nine trainees on placement with 2010 Rotherham.
A spokesman for the housing organisation insisted this week that whichever firm took on the housing maintenance contract—which is currently out to tender—would continue with the BETS programme.
She added: “The scheme has been a huge success and to assist our BETS develop further, and to attract new trainees, it will be better placed in a contractor-based environment where there is greater sector leverage and ultimately more job opportunities for permanent employment.
“2010 Rotherham will have a very clear client specification for the BETS scheme, ensuring that it remains successful and committed to providing training opportunities and valuable services to local people.”