My Lords, I beg leave to ask the Question which stands in my name on the Order Paper.
§ The Question was as follows:
§ To ask Her Majesty's Government, in view of the need for school-leavers to be given adequate advice in regard to obtaining a job, what training is given to those selected as career teachers.
§ The MINISTER of STATE, DEPARTMENT of EDUCATION and SCIENCE (Baroness Young)
My Lords, advice to school-leavers on obtaining a job, and assistance with placement, are available through the careers service which each local authority is required to provide and which works in close co-operation with the schools. In addition, schools provide programmes of careers education to help young people make sound vocational choices. There are no formal requirements for the training of those teachers who undertake careers work, but there is a wide variety of provision for in-service training, including courses of varying lengths provided by local education authorities.
My Lords, I thank the Minister for that reply, but does she not consider that there ought to be a reappraisal of the liaison between education authorities, schools and industry in order to improve this very important service, which I do not think is working at present as adequately as it should?
§ Baroness YOUNG
My Lords, I shall certainly take note of the very significant point which my noble friend has raised. 1210 Discussions are taking place on this important matter with my colleagues in the Department of Employment. I shall certainly ensure that my noble friend's comments are passed on to them.
§ Lord SOMERS
My Lords, does the Minister agree that one of the items of advice which might be given is that it is a good thing to get a job?
§ Lord STANLEY of ALDERLEY
My Lords, does my noble friend agree that careers teachers are encouraged to dissuade young people from making, as she says, a sound vocational choice, and in particular from taking an interest in technology and engineering, because universities unfortunately do not allow an "A" level in engineering to be regarded as an entrance qualification?
§ Baroness YOUNG
My Lords, this question on university entrance is somewhat wide of the precise Question which I have been asked on careers training, and I should prefer not to comment upon it. However, a great deal of encouragement is given to young people to take those courses which will lead them to the kind of jobs which are available.