The role of technology in levelling up the UK’s skills

An open letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson from Ufi VocTech Trust:

Open letter: The role of technology in levelling up the UK’s skills

Dear Mr Johnson,

Following the recent publication of the Levelling Up White Paper, we wanted to write and highlight how technology can support the ambition to challenge geographical inequality in the UK and give everyone the opportunity to flourish.

Ufi VocTech Trust welcomes the importance placed on skills, including pledges to support adult numeracy through the Multiply programme and routes to quality training through the Unit for Future Skills.

We believe that technology has a key role to play in helping level up adult skills across the UK and improving the lives of many.

It is important that tech is not just seen as remote or online learning, but as a diverse set of tools that can help level up learning.

The very best technology, developed and deployed as part of the solution to upskilling the UK workforce, can provide the capacity to respond to the challenges of rapidly changing business models, an increasing need to adapt to the forces of the global economy, and greater demands for new and emerging skills.

At Ufi VocTech Trust we have been demonstrating how transformative the very best technology can be at improving adult vocational skills, at pace and at scale. Projects we have supported, include the National Numeracy Challenge, which uses tech to improve access and overcome barriers of learner confidence, and the RSA’s Cities of Learning project which uses technology to connect local skills pathways and help learners secure training and work.

Our 2021 White Paper looks directly at the challenge of levelling up learning, and sets out a range of concrete steps to address regional, digital and personal barriers to upskilling.

As Government grapples with the many challenges of levelling up and addressing regional disparities, we know that it is crucial for its strategy to include the very best digital technology.

We call on Government to unlock the potential of digital technology and level up opportunities for those most impacted by geographical inequality, giving everyone the chance to get the skills they need for work.

Yours sincerely,

Dominic Gill
Chair of Trustees, Ufi VocTech Trust

Rebecca Garrod-Waters
Chief Executive, Ufi VocTech Trust

For interviews with Dominic Gill, Chair of Trustees, or Rebecca Garrod-Waters, CEO, please contact Josh Smith, Public Affairs Officer on