Ofsted gives full marks to Govia Thameslink Railway’s inclusive apprenticeship scheme

  • Education regulator endorses quality of the rail operator’s apprenticeship schemes
  • Inspectors find that internal trainers motivate apprentices to achieve their goals
  • Govia Thameslink Railway is on track to recruit 200 apprentices this year

Govia Thameslink Railway’s apprenticeship scheme has received an official stamp of approval by successfully passing its Ofsted New Provider Monitoring Visit.

The UK’s largest rail operator, on track to hire 200 apprentices in 2021, recently hosted Ofsted monitoring visits at its Selhurst depot in South London.

Inspectors found the rail operator, which runs Southern, Thameslink and Great Northern services, is delivering a “thoughtfully structured” curriculum and sets ambitious standards for its new recruits. Apprentices enjoy their training  and gradually build their skills, knowledge and behaviours, according to Ofsted’s report. The regulator also cited the motivational environment created by GTR’s trainers to help apprentices achieve their goals.

Ofsted highlighted GTR’s safety-first culture with the operator making progress in ensuring apprentices’ wellbeing and safety, especially considering the shift in learning patterns caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

David Jackson, Apprenticeship Specialist at GTR, said, “We’re really proud to see our apprentice programme recognised in this way. Our people are our biggest asset and we’re focused on attracting the next generation of talent to the rail industry. Our apprenticeship schemes offer an insight into the breadth of roles available in the sector in a structured, supportive learning environment.”

Apprenticeships are crucial in supporting GTR’s continued programme of work to improve diversity and inclusion in the rail industry; 27% of the company’s current apprentices are women.

Earlier this year GTR celebrated National Apprenticeship Week by sharing the story of Bob Bryce from Dunstable. At 76 years old he is thought to be the UK’s oldest apprentice, proving that apprentice opportunities at GTR are open to all. 60% of GTR’s apprenticeship workforce is made up of those over 30, while 30% of apprentices are over 40.

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