On 6 March 2014 the Government published a document, Funding Reform Technical Consultation. This document followed the original consultation on apprenticeship funding published in 2013 and sets out proposals on the funding principles and funding route in line with the Skills Funding Statement issued earlier in 2014.
Amongst other things, it will mean you now have to make a significant financial contribution towards training staff at your setting. At present, you are supposed to match the government contributions towards childcare qualifications, but most training providers waive that fee and take the hit themselves. This will all change if funding comes directly to employers.
We have compiled a brief summary of the main principles that the document discusses, and have put together a few questions of our own, independent of the government survey mentioned, as we would like to know how this will affect your business.
Key take outs:
Apprenticeships are a joint investment between the apprentice, the employer and the government. It is therefore right that the cost is shared between these three parties.
Doug Richard, founder of School for Startups, identified the following key principles that should underpin any future approach to funding Apprenticeships, and the funding methodology in this Section is designed to deliver and encourage these:
- The employer is the customer. Training providers should receive their funding from employers not a public agency. Positioning the employer as the customer would increase providers’ incentives to respond to business needs
- The employer should be required to co-invest. By making a significant direct financial contribution towards the cost of training, employers would have a greater incentive to demand relevant high-quality training and good value
- The government should not set the price of training or assessment. This should be freed from public control and set by the market between employers and providers, with government paying a proportion of this. This would help prioritise the learning that delivers the most value
- A proportion of the government funding should be linked to achievement. Payment should be partially linked to the achievement of the standard, providing an incentive to support individuals to achieve
- Government funding should recognise the additional costs for the smallest employers and relating to younger apprentices to ensure all employers and apprentices of all ages can benefit from Apprenticeships.
Employers are encouraged to read the full consultation document, which you can find here, and respond to a short questionnaire put together by the government.
- The Future of Apprenticeships in England: Funding Reform Technical Consultation
- The Future of Apprenticeships in England: Funding Reform Technical Consultation – response form
- AELP Briefing Paper No. 5
- AELP Briefing Paper No. 6
- KATO KAFEC Apprenticeship Consultation Letter
- Overview of changes for employers
So how will this affect your business? Do you have the time and money to deal with the training process? Let us know here. (This is independent of the government survey above)