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Peter Grant MP meeting Joe Pirrie in Glenrothes High School's library

Peter Grant MP last week met with local youngster, Joe Pirrie, to speak to him about his experience doing a Foundation Apprenticeship ahead of Scottish Apprenticeship Week.

Joe, S6 pupil and Head Boy at Glenrothes High School, hit the national press after revealing his choice to do a Foundation Apprenticeship in Children and Young People, in a bid to tackle employment related gender stereotypes. Joe was on the brink of leaving school at the end of S4 when a senior teacher, Mr Alan Cummings, sat down with him and persuaded him to explore the option of a Foundation Apprenticeship.

Foundation Apprenticeships are done over one or two years, replacing one subject from the more traditional curriculum, and lead to a qualification the equivalent of a Higher. When Joe explored this in more depth, he decided it was exactly what he needed and made the choice to stay on at school. Nearly two years on, and Joe has almost completed his Foundation Apprenticeship and has been offered a conditional Modern Apprenticeship at Little Einsteins Nursery in Kirkcaldy, where he is currently doing his Foundation Apprenticeship.

Peter Grant MP hailed this programme as “impressive” and said:

“It was terrific to meet Joe and hear what a difference the Foundation Apprenticeship has made to him. He’s also becoming something of a role model for other boys and young men who are thinking about a career in what has traditionally been an almost exclusively female sector. At a time when we are in the process of doubling the early years education entitlement, it is absolutely right that we do more to encourage young men to choose childcare as a career. We cannot continue to have 50% of the population ignore this as a viable and rewarding career choice just because of their gender.

“Joe is a great ambassador for Glenrothes High School. It was a pleasure to meet him.”

Joe Pirrie added:

“A foundation apprenticeship is the best opportunity a young person at school can get.”

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