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Written Statement - Work to Consider Options for Future Delivery of Careers Services

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Jeff Cuthbert, Deputy Minister for Skills

Careers information advice and guidance services are currently offered to school and further education students as well as to persons not in school or further education. Such services may include those related to education-business links, the ‘youth gateway’ programme and adult guidance services.  These services are currently delivered by contracts with six Careers Wales companies (which are companies limited by guarantee, each covering a specific operational area).

On 28 January 2010 the Minister for Children, Education and Lifelong Learning (now the Minister for Education and Skills) announced his intention to reorganise delivery of careers services so that these are provided through a single unified structure.  This intention is strongly aligned with the recommendations contained in the independent review of careers services undertaken in 2009 and 2010, Future Ambitions: developing careers services in Wales.  For the 2012-13 financial year, careers services will be provided through a contract with a single company limited by guarantee, Careers Choices Dewis Gyrfa (CCDG), which is being formed through a merger of the six Careers Wales companies.

We are currently considering options for the future delivery of careers services in Wales from April 2013.  A critical consideration is whether public or private sector delivery is more appropriate.  

Whilst our preferred option is presently public sector delivery I, and the Minister for Education and Skills, have agreed that a full appraisal of the legal and financial implications of options under consideration for future delivery of the careers service (a due diligence exercise) should be undertaken before a final decision is taken on which option to pursue.

The Welsh Government has approached the CCDG Board to seek the consent of CCDG to explore the options and commence the due diligence exercise. The CCDG Board have granted their consent.

I expect to be able to update Assembly Members on the outcome of this work in the summer term.