In the article on Ucatt’s call for an apprenticeship quota on public sector projects (9 July,, you offer a skewed view on the increasingly popular Programme-Led Apprenticeship scheme.

The reality is that we do need to place more apprentices and that is why a flexible apprenticeship programme was developed, called Programme-Led Apprenticeships (PLA). PLAs allow young people to complete a full-time college-based construction course before a continuous placement of up to 12 months with an employer. This is a much shorter time commitment for businesses than traditional apprentices.

We are in full agreement with Ucatt that measures such as public sector contract clauses could also play a key part in addressing the issue and the National Skills Academies for Construction, currently being established across England, will also help ease the burden on individual employers by enabling training through the supply chain.

But individual employers have a responsibility to help ensure the next generation of workers get the same opportunities they once received. That buck should not be passed.

Robert MacGregor, business support manager, ConstructionSkills Apprenticeships