EXTRA CURRICULUM: Qualified success

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Four out of five German workers hold a vocational or professional qualification, while almost one in three Britons of working age have no qualifications at all, according to a report out today. The number of Britons holding similar qualifications is believed to be between 45 and 50 per cent.

Germany's work-based training system, which links firms and colleges, could point the way forward for the UK, says the National Commission on Education in a briefing paper.

In Germany, skilled blue- and white-collar workers and craftsmen in small and medium-sized organisations hold a high status in society, it says.

`The Dual System of Vocational Education and Training in Germany' is available from the National Commission on Education, 344-354 Gray's Inn Road, London WC1X 8BP.