St Helens Council Apprentice Training Framework

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St Helens Council Apprentice Training Framework

St Helens Council has a strong track record in offering apprenticeship opportunities for young people usually aged between the ages of 16-19. These young people are placed into Council departments undertaking various roles dependent upon their interests and qualifications and the availability of placements and budgets. Funding for apprenticeships has mainly been found from departmental budgets, but there has been some significant central financial support in recent years. Both sets of funding are used only to pay the apprenticeship allowance, as prior to the introduction of the apprenticeship levy, the training element of apprenticeships has been fully funded by the government via approved training providers.

Our apprenticeship programme is for one year and alongside the work experience in the Council; all apprentices undertake a relevant appropriate apprenticeship framework or standard, leading to the achievement of a Level 2 qualification. The Council is a large public sector organisation with a pay bill of over £3 million per annum. Therefore we are liable to pay the apprenticeship levy. The levy will be charged at a rate of 0.5% of our annual pay bill and we will be subject to the public sector target duty. This requires the Council to achieve a minimum of 2.3% apprenticeship starts each year. On current workforce headcount figures this equates to 122 starts per year.

The obligations and opportunities created by the introduction of the levy from April 2017 has prompted the Council to review its approach to this aspect of workforce development. Therefore, in summary, it is our intention to use the levy to develop and extend our existing apprenticeship programme. This will sit alongside a more strategic approach to qualifying our existing employees including graduates where appropriate, via apprenticeship frameworks or standards.

Deadline: 19 April 2017

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