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The Centre of Excellence brings together the highest quality teaching and training practices from across the WorldSkills international network and applies these in the UK.
— Dr Neil Bentley-Gockmann OBE, WorldSkills UK CEO

The WorldSkills UK Centre of Excellence

WorldSkills UK’s work is setting the stage for the UK to become a thriving powerhouse by creating a world-class skills economy through its Centre of Excellence in partnership with NCFE and Department for Education. The Centre of Excellence aims to achieve world-class standards by transferring knowledge and creating space for innovation. It does this by drawing on WorldSkills UK know-how of training and by leveraging its international network. Its priority is to make sure teaching practitioners are equipped with both the theoretical and practical understanding to embed excellence in their teaching.

And it’s working. During its three-year pilot, the Centre of Excellence programme has become highly valued by institutions and educators for both professional development and as a quality improvement tool that has raised standards and education outcomes of students and apprentices. It is already proven to develop higher-order technical competencies, behaviours, and transferable skills that will help young people realize their potential and succeed in their education, work, and life.

It’s our aim to create a world-class tier of teachers who not only raise the standards of skills but also improve the performance and achievements of all the young people they teach.
— Dr Neil Bentley-Gockmann OBE, WorldSkills UK CEO

The Centre of Excellence engages educators from across the UK with a focus on economically deprived areas and with a higher proportion of ethnic minority learners; those who may not previously have had access to WorldSkills UK activities. All with one central guiding ambition: raising national standards for TVET, across the country.

The first year’s results reveal the wheels of a positive shift in training and assessment techniques already in motion.


The WorldSkills UK Centre of Excellence has found that:

  • 88% of educators said the programme had already had an impact on their teaching practice
  • 80% of educators’ knowledge increased
  • 75% of educators have more confidence in teaching their subject or skill
  • 79% of learners agreed that the activity had improved their technical skills
  • 70% of learners reported a major or substantial impact on their future education and career aspirations

And according to WorldSkills UK’s 2023 International Benchmarking and Insights report, “Bringing world-class skills to the UK”, the Centre of Excellence model is expanding. Over the next three years, the programme will open to all skills providers, closing the gap between the expertise the country needs, and the expertise being nurtured in young people.

The findings have confirmed WorldSkills UK’s confidence in the huge potential of the programme. Neil concludes, “We always believed in our impact. But now we are starting to prove that we are reaching even more young people and educators through our training and development programmes, and through our Centre of Excellence. Greater participation will change perceptions around vocational skills, raise the standards of skills training, increase our skilled workforce, and ultimately build a more prosperous UK for all.”