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Apprenticeships Update from the Government

Government announcement outlining further support for young and disadvantaged

Earlier in 2016 the Government announced radical changes to the UK Apprenticeship scheme in order to increase not just the number of apprentices in the UK (as per their pledge to create 3 million apprenticeships by 2020) but also the quality of the courses. This is all in a vision to build a country of skilled individuals pursuing long term careers, regardless of age, background or geographical location.

The key changes will affect the content and structure of the courses, moving away from the current frameworks and toward industry led apprenticeship standards being led by Trailblazer groups. It is also changing how they are funded. Despite introducing an "Apprenticeship Levy" (which will paid by all UK employers who have a total employee pay bill above £3m a year) 98% of all employers who are not paying the levy will have access to funding for 90% of their apprenticeship training costs.

Today the Government has issued a press release which provides further clarification on how funding will provide greater flexibility for employers and will favour those taking on younger and disadvantaged individuals.

Further funding will be available to small businesses who take on 16-18 year olds, 19-24 year olds who have been in care or have an education and health plan or who come from the most deprived areas. In fact more than £60 million will be invested in supporting the training of apprentices from the poorest parts of the country.

In addition further details have been announced of how employers can manage their funds downloaded from their "digital accounts", including the ability to hold on to them for a total of 24 months before they expire (as opposed to the previous proposal of 18 months) and an ability to transfer funds to other employers or training agencies.

The Government has updated its previously published document "Apprenticeship funding: how it will work" to assist employers to understand how the Apprenticeship Levy will work and how they can access funding.

For the full press release: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-apprenticeship-funding-to-transform-investment-in-skills.

Find out more about how we can assist you in benefiting from the Apprenticeship Levy with our Managed Apprenticeship Service.

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