The apprenticeship levy: implications for inspection

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Funding for apprenticeships is altering. An apprenticeship levy of 0.5% is being utilized on wage payments, however is offset by a authorities allowance of £15,000. Which means solely corporations with a wage invoice bigger than £3 million kilos will really pay. The levy should be spent on apprenticeship coaching on an authorized apprenticeship framework or customary. It may’t be used for issues similar to inside coaching or apprentice salaries.

New mannequin of apprenticeships rising

Alongside the levy, the construction of apprenticeships is altering. Till now apprenticeship frameworks have developed apprentices’ information and abilities by vocational and basic {qualifications} alongside on- and off-the-job coaching.

Now a brand new mannequin of apprenticeship is rising. That is rather more occupationally particular and is immediately linked to the wants of employers. Sooner or later apprentices must exhibit that they meet the occupational requirements and behaviours anticipated for his or her chosen occupation. For a lot of of those apprenticeships there could also be no vocational {qualifications}. However apprentices will nonetheless want to amass {qualifications} in English and arithmetic, if they don’t have them after they start their apprenticeship.

What does this imply for inspection?

Whatever the apprenticeship customary, inspectors will anticipate to see that apprentices work to the exacting requirements set by employers and coaching suppliers.

Apprentices should present that they’ve developed substantial new information, abilities and behaviours to correctly put together them for his or her chosen profession. Consequently, it’s important for employers and coaching suppliers to develop plans for apprentices which have clear studying, abilities and profession paths. Additionally they want to observe and consider these plans ceaselessly. That is important to make sure that apprentices are given the prospect to benefit from their alternative, and for his or her employer to supply a very high-quality coaching programme.

Apprentices additionally require suggestions on their efficiency to allow them to enhance their abilities and efficiently full their apprenticeship. Employers, suppliers and apprentices should plan and put together for the end-point evaluation. And apprentices have to know that they’ve the talents and attributes they require to go this important evaluation.

Ofsted has simply re-published its Additional training and abilities inspection handbook this April to make it clear that it will likely be inspecting apprenticeships funded by the apprenticeships levy, simply because it inspects these funded by ESFA. The handbook barely revises the wording of the apprenticeships analysis standards to make sure that it accommodates apprenticeships undertaken towards requirements in addition to frameworks.

Ofsted is conscious that coaching suppliers could also be delivering apprenticeships coaching towards current frameworks similtaneously apprenticeships towards new requirements.

Numeracy and literacy important abilities

Inspectors will even wish to see enhancements in apprentices’ English and arithmetic abilities. All apprentices should to have the ability to present that they’re creating the literacy and numeracy abilities wanted for his or her employment. For instance, in aeronautical engineering, apprentices must work throughout the tight tolerances for accuracy in measurement and calculations. Hairdressing apprentices want to know the influence of time within the software of hair relaxant; plasterers must calculate the connection between the quantity of ‘combine’ and their work charge, and enterprise directors want to make sure that their written communications are of the very best customary.

The levy additionally implies that employers will probably be extra accountable for the success of their apprenticeships. They may contract with coaching suppliers and can have to be very clear about how their apprentice meets the necessities of an apprenticeship. Put merely, employers should be certain that their apprentices get the coaching they want, together with time off-the-job. Employers who can not meet these necessities might want to reappraise their dedication to apprenticeships. An apprentice must take time throughout the working week to be taught one thing new, to enhance their abilities and assessment their studying. With out these alternatives there isn’t a apprenticeship.

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