Award ceremony at the Clyde Shipyards

24 Mar

“Learning doesn’t stop at the school gates; not in the Clyde Shipyards anyway!”

Ian Davidson MP, Mike Cord CEO of BAE Systems and Hugh Scullion, General Secretary Confederation of Shipbuilding & Engineering Unions (CSEU) presented awards at a ceremony at the BAE Systems Govan Shipyard in January 2011 to BAE Systems employees who successfully completed accredited training courses. Over 70 employees at the BAE Systems Govan and Scotstoun Shipyards have undertaken accredited learning in Information and Communications Technology (ICT), literacy & numeracy, Pensions, English as Second or Other Language (ESOL) & 17th Edition IEE City & Guilds Wiring Regulations courses.

The learning was organised by Union Learning Reps and the courses where delivered on site at the Govan Shipyard with BAE Systems giving paid time off. This is part of an innovative project by trade unions and employers to bring new learning opportunities to the workplace. The courses were delivered by the trade union education department of Stow College Glasgow.

Unite Learning Reps brought learning into the workplace. The ULRs have facilitated a return to learning for many employees who have been away from learning for many years, or had previous bad experiences of education. The achievement of the employees at BAE Systems is significant due to the fact that all learning took place in the workplace by non-traditional learners, who have been away from learning  for ten, twenty or thirty years in some instances.

Kenny Jordon Regional Secretary for the Confederation of Shipbuilding & Engineering Unions (CSEU) said:

“With over 50 awards being made to working members this is a celebration that development of worthwhile learning does not need to end at the school gates but can be successfully taken into the shipyard with outstanding results”

Billy McKay Unite the Union Govan Convenor & Lead Union Learning Rep for the Clyde Yards said:

“Having taken over responsibility for this in-house learning initiative I have gained great satisfaction from witnessing my colleagues gaining both knowledge and confidence from the courses”

Union Learning Reps are workplace reps, recognised under the Employment Act (2002). They have similar rights to time off and facilities as Shop Stewards and Health and Safety reps. Their remit is to promote lifelong learning in the workplace. Unite has learning agreements with many of Scotland’s key employers, including Rolls-Royce, SPT, First Group, National Australia Group, Remploy, and various local authorities and NHS Boards.

The Union Learning at the Clyde Shipyards has been provided by Union Learning Reps from Unite the Union, GMB & UCATT under the umbrella of the Confederation of Shipbuilding & Engineering Unions (CSSEU).  BAE System is a major employer in Scotland in the West of Scotland providing thousands of jobs in both the Clyde Shipyards.

Where we have signed learning agreements, we work with employers to promote learning and skills in the workplace. We work in partnership with FE colleges to provide accredited training. We sign service level agreements with colleges to ensure our members get high quality tuition delivered in the workplace. Workplace learning is free at the point of access, and funded in a variety of ways, including through employers’ training budgets, ILA, ESF & Glasgow Learning.


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