The green skills gap between schools and employers


7th August 2023

Read time

3 minutes

Boy sits in classroom with his hand up, fellow pupils are looking down at a textbook.

Speaking in-person at a Birmingham based careers-teacher during the closing days of term gave me a sharp dig in the ribs and striking wake-up call. They had no context of Green-jobs, green careers and the opportunities that lay ahead for their students. And how could they? Teachers are stretched thinly, employer engagement is patchy, and the timeline to green jobs is opaque.

Why was this conversation such a dig in the ribs for me? It was the contrast from earlier in that same week, where I’d been with our partner schools as part of a National Grid programme, who for the last 3-years have supported 90+ schools and 85,000+ students, to lay foundations on all things green jobs and green careers.

The disparity is shocking. Whilst this is a UK-wise challenge, there is contrast in regional awareness and regional employer engagement… it is both a wake-up call and a call-to-action for employers across every sector in every region. Without the future green-skills of those people currently in education to fill future green job vacancies, there will be no net-zero, no corporate growth, and no thriving communities.

National Grid, recipient of our ‘Green Collar’ jobs award, have an urgency shared by their sector and supply chain. And this group is a driving reason that our Green Skills Workforce Coalition, now with over 59 employer members, will launch sector groups to focus on sector priorities for green jobs. That way, the Coalition can all benefit from group-wide school engagement, whilst also benefitting from bespoke and agile sector career-pathway promotion.

You should get involved:

  • Join our Green-Skills-Workforce coalition: attend our Autumn gathering.
  • Contribute to our Research strand, led by PwC. 15-minute survey
  • Contribute to our Business-Case strand, Join almost a dozen employers on the 7th August
  • Take action to support schools & teachers in your region: Leverage the Coalition.

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