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The upcoming general election will be a watershed moment for the UK’s skills agenda. Whichever party forms the next government, solving the UK’s skills challenges means addressing them in a holistic way.

The path to prosperity requires a skills system that puts people first, allowing everyone to become a learner wherever and whenever they choose. Raising productivity is impossible without a well-trained workforce that has opportunities to reskill and upskill throughout the course of their careers. And growth will only return to every left-behind place across the UK if we create clear new ways of tapping into the talent and potential of all of its residents.

Achieving each of these aims requires sound, pragmatic, visionary policies designed to transform the UK’s skills landscape. These need to be carefully finessed. The vital aim to amend and improve the measures already in place must be balanced against a more ambitious view, which takes the valuable material in the UK’s current education settlement and builds it into a truly world-leading system suited to the 21st century.

There are any number of proposals that could be filed under either heading. But there are several that immediately recommend themselves as urgent and pathbreaking interventions, which any future UK Government ought to make.

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