Skills East Sussex

1. Skills East Sussex

Skills East Sussex (SES) is the county’s strategic body for employment and skills. The group aims to drive an improvement in local employment and skills in order to increase economic prosperity in East Sussex. Using a firm evidence base, it agrees and sets priorities, and provides direction for the county’s approach to employment and skills.

SES has identified a number of sectors and issues where it wants to make a difference by working together. SES is committed to improving the delivery of skills for the engineering, construction, health and social care, creative, digital and media and land-based sectors.

Please see below headline documents for Skills East Sussex including our statement of priorities, terms of reference and forward plan:

Please click through the pages for more on the work of Skills East Sussex.

New Opportunity – Skills East Sussex Chair

Skills East Sussex is looking to recruit a local employer with an interest in skills and employment, to Chair the Board at its three meetings a year, and to represent Skills East Sussex at a regional level. This is an exciting opportunity to make a valuable contribution and to have a direct impact on the futures of our local residents. Skills East Sussex is recognised as a dynamic and innovative Board and the Chair is supported by the Employability and Skills Team who provide the Secretariat to the Skills East Sussex Board and it’s meetings.

Applications are sought by the 20th December 2019. Details can be downloaded here:

Please send both the application and monitoring form to

For further discussion please contact Holly Aquilina, Employability and Skills Strategy Manager on 01323 463538/07701 394668

2. Minutes and Documents

Please see below for the minutes and documents of the previous three Skills East Sussex meetings.

Skills East Sussex 19.09.19

Skills East Sussex 19.09.19 minutes

Key documents from the meeting: Employment and Skills related projects

Skills East Sussex 06.12.18

Skills East Sussex 06.12.18 minutes

Key documents from the meeting: CXK Skills East Sussex Presentation 06.12.2018, SELEP presentation for SES, and The NESTA UK Skills Taxonomy briefing.

The December meeting for Skills East Sussex included updates from the South East LEP on current and future funding calls; from CXK on the National Careers Service contract; from external consultant always possible on a proposal for a cross-sector task groups careers campaign; and from County Council employees on the Open Doors project, apprenticeship promotion, and the updated sector skills reports.

Skills East Sussex 27.09.18

Skills East Sussex 27.09.18 minutes

Key documents from the meeting: Apprenticeships East Sussex Plan 2017–18, Apprenticeships East Sussex Plan 2018–19, KSS Careers Progression update, and the SES Action Plan targets update.

The September meeting for Skills East Sussex included updates from Health Education England on their careers and skills-related work; from Hastings Borough Council on the CHART project; and from County Council employees on the sector task groups, the Careers Hub East Sussex, Apprenticeships East Sussex, and the Skills East Sussex Action Plan targets.

Skills East Sussex 21.06.18

Skills East Sussex 21.06.18 minutes

Key documents from the meeting: Bexhill College curriculum, East Sussex College Group curriculum, Plumpton College curriculum, SELEP Skills Strategy update, and the SES forward plan for 2018/19.

The June meeting for Skills East Sussex included updates from the South East LEP on the skills strategy, all three East Sussex Colleges on their curriculum offers for the next academic year, and representatives from the engineering, construction, and creative and digital task groups.

3. Employment and Skills Projects in East Sussex

Below are examples of the work supported by the Employability and Skills team, Skills East Sussex, and The Careers and Enterprise Company.

If you represent a business or education partner and would like to contribute to similar projects, please contact

Open Doors – Heathfield Community College Case Study

Apprenticeships – Apprenticeships in Sussex with Chailey School Case Study

Cornerstone Employers – Marshall Tufflex Case Study

Hastings Opportunity Area – Careers Day Case Study

Apprenticeships – Apprenticeship Roadshow Case Study

Enterprise Adviser Network – National Trust and Plumpton College Case Study

4. East Sussex Skills Evidence Base

East Sussex County Council has undertaken research into skill gaps and issues in the priority growth sectors for East Sussex. These reports can be viewed on The East Sussex in Figures (ESIF) website.

The evidence base contains two summary reports and focused reports on the following sectors:

  • Construction (includes planning and the Built Environment)
  • Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing
  • Healthcare (includes Social Care)
  • Land-based industries (includes subsectors of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing and Landscape activities)
  • Visitor Economy
  • Digital and Media, Creative and Cultural
  • Low Carbon and Environmental Goods and Services
  • Professional and Business Services (includes Financial Sector, Banking, Insurance and Accountancy)
  • Wholesale, Retail and Motor Trades

5. Skills East Sussex Projects and Sector Task Groups

Enterprise Adviser Network

Launched by Skills East Sussex in 2015, the Enterprise Adviser Network (EAN) helps secondary schools and colleges create long-term careers education, information, advice and guidance strategies by matching them with people from local businesses.

You can find out more about EAN on the Enterprise Adviser Network webpage.


Progress was launched in April 2016 aims to improve the employability and work readiness of young people in the county, improve work experience opportunities, reduce NEET and encourage young people to aspire to careers in STEM and other priority growth sectors.

The programme ended on 30th September 2017, to find out more please read the Progress Evaluation Report – November 2017.

SES Sector Task Groups

Skills East Task Groups have been set up to cover the following sectors; Construction, Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing, Creative and Digital and Land Based industries. A dedicated Visitor Economy Task Group will be set up in early 2018.

Please read the latest SES Sector Task Group Update to Skills East Sussex from 30.11.17 for more information on the work of the SES Sector Task Groups.

6. Latest News and Press Releases

Info-graphic – How Apprenticeships work for SMEs in East Sussex

Skills East Sussex, East Sussex County Council and SCTP have worked together to produce an info-graphic to help SMEs understand how apprenticeships work for them in East Sussex.

Skills East Sussex Video

A video on the work of Skills East Sussex can be found on the ESCC You Tube Channel. The video concentrates on The Big Bang @Eastbourne and STEAMfest 2017 which form part of the Progress project and are supported by The Enterprise Adviser Network and the SES Engineering Task Group.

Press Releases

Creative Boost – New funding to boost students’ creative skills

Open Doors 2017 – Call for businesses to help boost career prospects

South East LEP Skills Awards 07.17 – Businesses lead the way in developing skills

7. Become an Industry Champion

To support the work of Enterprise Advisers we are looking for dynamic and enthusiastic Industry Champions to work directly with young people in the County on a range of activities.

We are building a growing network of Industry Champions that represent an array of job roles and career paths from all industries, and in particular the county’s priority sectors. Industry Champions are individuals working at any level be it as CEOs, sole traders, freelancers, or apprentices, who have an interest in sharing their experience of work and promoting their industry.

An Industry Champion will:

  • Be directly involved with delivering activities for young people in schools
  • Have an ability to present their role, experience and knowledge with a positive energy and strong understanding of their industry
  • Commit some time to careers and enterprise activities in schools such as giving talks / presentations at school/college events, mentoring young people, attending careers fairs, giving premises tours, offering work experience opportunities
  • Work across the County with different schools

The Industry Champion role is a rewarding experience for staff at any level and offers an opportunity for staff to develop their skills. Our Industry Champions Network is currently growing, with opportunities to provide training, support and sharing of best practice.

To hear from current Industry Champions watch our video.

For more information contact our Enterprise Coordinator.

8. Open Doors

Open Doors is a workplace based project run by East Sussex County Council and supported by Skills East Sussex. School pupils across East Sussex, including Hastings, are given the unique chance to visit workplaces and hear from employers like you about the range of jobs that you offer, and the career paths into them.

This gives our pupils essential knowledge and experience to shape their own futures and provides employers with the opportunity to engage with young people who could form their future workforce. Businesses have offered apprenticeships, work experience placements, and built relationships with local schools.

We would like to invite you to participate in this innovative programme.

Last November, over 500 students visited 44 businesses, from Brighton to Dungeness, learning about a diverse range of East Sussex based jobs in web design, event management, engineering, construction, care, hospitality and many more.

Students’ feedback was very positive, with all participants saying that they had learnt about new roles, and that the experience would help inform their future learning and career decisions. Some employers even identified members of their future workforce from the visits with one company signing up two visiting students as future apprentices!

Visits are completely in your hands. They run during school hours, but you can pick which days, times, and how many students you and your team would like to host. The visit only has to take up an hour of your day, although some companies set aside a day or a week and host multiple visits.

Visits are due to start from November 4th to the 29th, and we would like to invite more businesses to open their doors to young people from across East Sussex.

If you are interested in opening your doors to young people in order to shape their futures, or would like to know more, please reply to or call Kimberley Bulgin on 01273 335625.