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How apprenticeships work

There has never been a better time to employ an apprentice or start an apprenticeship

Apprenticeships are a great opportunity for people to earn while they learn, gain vital work experience and set themselves on a fast-track to a successful career for life. Lasting between one and five years, apprenticeships are now available in over hundreds of occupations in many industries.

Apprenticeships are for people of all ages and all backgrounds. They offer a ladder of opportunity for people to gain the life changing skills they need and enable businesses to acquire the critical skills they need for business growth. Since 2015, we’ve seen over 1.2 million apprenticeship starts to date more opportunities for people of all ages and from all backgrounds

Fears over ‘middle-class grab’ on apprenticeships are valid, minister admits

Fears of a “middle-class grab” on apprenticeships are “valid”, the skills minister has admitted.

Anne Milton told a House of Lords inquiry into the economics of further, higher and technical education that she was “watching and waiting” to see what happened – and would take action if necessary.

Chancellor announces £80m to support small businesses with apprentices

There will be an extra £80 million released to help small businesses recruit apprentices, the chancellor has announced in his spring statement to Parliament.

But it isn’t strictly new funding, a Treasury official later admitted.

National Apprenticeship Week 2018 celebrates best of earning and learning

The very best of what earning and learning means for learners and employers will be celebrated during the eleventh National Apprenticeship Week.

The theme for 2018’s event, running from March 5 until March 9, is ‘Apprenticeships work’.

Jason Holt named Apprenticeship Ambassador Network chair

Jason Holt CBE, the chief executive of Holts Group, has been named chair of the Apprenticeship Ambassador Network, replacing its disgraced former chair David Meller.

This is a promotion for Mr Holt, who had previously been the apprenticeships ambassador for small businesses.

Apprenticeships bridge skills gaps for national house builder

Redrow Homes headquartered in Flintshire, has offered apprenticeships since it was founded in 1974.

A national housebuilder is supporting National Apprenticeship Week after finding apprentices the perfect solution to filling the skills gap within the company.

Support and regulation needed for high-quality apprenticeships

There could also soon be a quality mark for apprentice employers offered by Investors in People, the organisation has said

More regulation is required to ensure apprenticeships are high-quality, the education select committee has heard.

How to secure your spot on a sought-after construction apprenticeship

The UK construction industry needing 135,000 new apprentices by 2021 to help build homes, roads and railways all in a bid to make our lives easier and more enjoyable.

With this in mind there is a huge employment drive for young apprentices in Plymouth.

A construction apprenticeship lets you earn while you learn, putting you on the road to a rewarding career in one of the UK’s most innovative, dynamic and exciting industries and is therefore extremely sought after.

Apprenticeships scheme 'a massive lost opportunity'

An apprenticeship scheme funded by a levy on big employers is a "massive lost opportunity" and must be reformed, the head of the CBI has said.

Wales and England operate different systems but Carolyn Fairbairn believes neither is working well.

City & Guilds: "Industry meeting" looking at ‘Building Futures’ in Wales

This, free to attend, drop-in event will focus on the Qualification Wales Sector Review (published 8th Feb) and give employers and representative bodies the opportunity to discuss the public consultation with City & Guilds and other employers present.

Use university subsidies to promote apprenticeships and beat rise of the robots; Rob Halfon

Over the last few years, major progress has been made in improving our education system. The number of young people in good or outstanding schools has risen by nearly two million in less than a decade, while there are fewer qualifications that hold no real currency with employers. We also have some of the best universities in the world.

Every adult should get £10,000 for education and training, influential report claims

Every adult should get £10,000 for a minimum of two years just to spend on education or training, so long as they do not already have a degree, according to the influential UCL Institute of Education.

And employers should be allowed to spend apprenticeship levy funds to top up these costs, including on training that doesn’t take the form of apprenticeships.

Sector welcomes U-turn on qualifications in apprenticeships

A major U-turn that should allow mandatory technical qualifications to be included in new apprenticeships had been widely welcomed by the sector.

The change was announced at a special Institute for Apprenticeships briefing event, days after it was exclusively revealed on the front page of the previous FE Week.

It’s great that the first cohort of degree apprentices has graduated, but there should be more of them

Degree Apprenticeships are one of the most exciting developments to happen in the school leaver market for years, but more needs to be done to increase uptake of the programmes.

Government statistics show that Level 6 (bachelor’s degree level) and Level 7 (master’s degree level) have shockingly low participation rates in comparison to other levels of apprenticeship. While there were 259,430 Intermediate Apprenticeship starts in England in 2016/17, 195,770 Advanced Apprenticeship starts, and 34,470 Levels 4 and 5 Higher Apprenticeships, the number of people starting Level 6 (bachelor’s degree level) programmes for the year was just 1,620 and there were only 50 Level 7 (master’s degree level) starts.

Apprentices will be top source of talent in 2018, says 37% of business

A third of businesses view apprentices as the most valuable source of emerging talent in 2018. That is according to a poll of over 2,000 senior HR professionals carried out by Alexander Mann Solutions. 

Half of managers do not plan to use apprenticeship levy fund

Almost half (49%) of managers have said they would not use their training fund available through apprenticeship levy, with many claiming there were no apprenticeships available in their industry.

A survey by training course provider DPG found that 43% of managers did not believe there were any apprenticeships that were useful for their businesses, despite programmes being offered in many areas including HR, IT and finance.

Give apprenticeships time, and they’ll futureproof our workforce

Kirstie Donnelly MBE is managing director of City & Guilds.

The levy presents a valuable opportunity for organisations to rethink the way they fund training for employees (Source: Getty)

Just under a year on from the introduction of radical reforms to the UK’s apprenticeship system, some seemingly worrying statistics have started to emerge.

In January, official figures highlighted a significant drop in the number of new apprentice sign-ups; a year-on-year reduction of some 41,000 new apprentices were registered between August and October.

But does this drop really signal a failure in the system, or is there more behind the numbers?

Off-the-job qualifications can be included in apprenticeships, IfA confirms

Off-the-job technical qualifications can now be included in apprenticeships, the Institute for Apprenticeships has officially announced, confirming a significant U-turn which FE Week revealed last week.

It is one of a number of reforms from the IfA to make the approval of new apprenticeship standards “faster and better”, after skills minister Anne Milton admitted that “some oil on the wheels” was needed.

FE and social justice: Top six education committee chair recommendations

Robert Halfon is set to give the keynote address on the theme of social justice and skills at an event run by the Centre of Social Justice, the Learning and Work Institute, and the Open University on Monday morning.

The chair of the Commons education select committee will set out his vision for how FE and HE can help the economy grow and deliver social justice.

Schools: you must tell pupils about apprenticeships!

After news broke that only two of the 10 largest multi-academy trusts are actually implementing the so-called Baker Clause, which requires schools to allow technical education providers access to their pupils, the man who fought for the clause in the first place explains why it is so vital that every school complies

Qualifications WILL be allowed for apprenticeships

Strict rules that apprenticeships cannot involve qualifications are set to be overturned next week, FE Week understands, potentially unsticking a series of standards held up for years by the ban.

The Institute for Apprenticeships is expected to announce that qualifications, such as technical certificates that show evidence of knowledge, will be considered in the future.

UCEM’s Built Environment Skills Summit report demands the UK rises to the challenge and overcomes mounting skills crisis

·         UK is facing one of its greatest ever challenges – an acute shortage of the skills needed to meet construction demand

 ·         Sector leaders say, “It’s time for change”

·         More collaborative approach is required between industry, Government and education

University College of Estate Management (UCEM) has today published a report examining the Built Environment sector’s skills crisis, which urges action to reverse the trend.

Northern Powerhouse education report: the eight findings for FE and skills

The Northern Powerhouse Partnership has today published a major report on how the region can close the education and skills attainment gap with the south.

Chaired by former chancellor George Osborne, the organisation has a number of recommendations for improving FE.

FE Week has pulled out the eight main findings.

Metro mayors commit to growing BAME apprenticeships

Five city mayors have committed to increasing the number of apprentices from ethnic minority and disadvantaged backgrounds.

The ‘Five cities project’, launched by the Department for Education, will see the National Apprenticeship Service work with the mayors of Greater Manchester, London, Bristol, Birmingham and Leicester to improve apprenticeship diversity in their areas.

Carillion apprentices WILL be paid after January, DfE confirms

Any former Carillion apprentice who is yet to find alternative employment following the collapse of the outsourcing giant will be paid after January, despite reports claiming this was not the case, the government has confirmed.

A story by the Huffington Post on Monday claimed that the apprenticeships and skills minister Anne Milton had said payments to the out-of-work construction trainees would stop at the end of January.

Government in danger of not meeting apprenticeship target - Sector response

Apprenticeship and levy statistics: January 2018

The latest figures published by the Department for Education remain significantly lower than for the same period in each of the previous couple of years

Statistics covering latest monthly apprenticeship starts, apprenticeship service registrations and commitments and apprenticeship levy declared information.