Supporting guidance for apprentices, employers and training providers
Government measures have been announced to combat the impact of COVID-19 on apprenticeships.
With the closures of the majority of schools, colleges and workplaces during COVID-19, the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) has taken steps to make it easier for apprentices to continue and complete in a different way, or, if necessary, to pause and resume an apprenticeship later.
The guidance sets out temporary flexibilities that are being introduced to the apprenticeship programme, including:
- Introducing flexibilities to allow furloughed apprentices to continue their training, as long as it does not provide services to, or generate revenue for, their employer.
- Encouraging training providers to deliver training to apprentices remotely and via e-learning.
- Allowing the modification of end-point assessment arrangements, including remote assessments wherever practicable and possible in order to maintain progress and achievement for apprentices.
- Clarifying that apprentices ready for assessment, but who cannot be assessed due to COVID-19 issues, can have their end-point assessment rescheduled.
- Enabling employers and training providers to report and initiate a break in learning, where the interruption to learning due to COVID-19 is greater than 4 weeks.
- Clarification on how to record breaks in learning so that funding is not unnecessarily disrupted.
- Confirming that, where apprentices are made redundant, it is our ambition to find them alternative employment and continue their apprenticeship as quickly as possible and within 12 weeks.
This information is wholly welcome—it’s critical that we continue to receive clear Government direction to support learners in this difficult time. We look forward to further assurances on continued funding and support to help apprentices complete their programmes.
You can find the full guidance here.
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