We need more joined up thinking to harness the skills of veterans

Published Jan 15, 2017

Mike_Hookem.jpgUKIP Veterans Spokesman, Mike Hookem MEP has welcomed proposals by the Gatsby Foundation to retrain members of the armed forces as FE teachers, saying; "it has long been UKIP policy to keep the valuable skills veterans have acquired in the public sector."

The scheme, funded by the Education and Retraining Foundation and the Gatsby Charity Foundation, expects to retrain 110 military service leavers over the next 18 months in areas such as science, engineering and technology.

Speaking of the teacher training initiative, Mr Hookem said, "members of the armed forces pick up a great deal of expertise and experience during their service, much of which is currently lost to the public sector when troops return to civilian life."

"As a nation we should be harnessing this experience for the public good and allow veterans to continue their public service in civilian life.

"Initiatives such as this also aid the transition between service and civilian life, which some members of the armed forces can find incredibly difficult."

"I would like to see many more initiatives that aim to give members of the armed forces coming to the end of their service a range of options that can both harness and enhance their skill base moving forward."

"Organisations such as Border Force, the Prison Service, and the NHS are crying out for the type of skills many veterans already have."

"It is time we had some joined up thinking in this area that would offer a seem less pathway from a job in the military to a job in public service."

UKIP Education Spokesman David Kurten AM added, "Allowing veterans to teach students in FE colleges is an excellent idea. This country has de-skilled over the last four decades and the skills gap in this country is now immense. We desperately need to recruit and retain more high quality teachers, especially those with practical and technical skills.

"Those who have served in the armed forces have a huge range of just such skills along with valuable experience, and will be able to add immense value to young people in education. This scheme is a win-win for everyone."

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