With a vote of 51.9% to leave the EU, how does this affect the Further Education and Work Based Learning sectors? There will obviously be a period of change and the implications of the Brexit vote are potentially huge, however initial indications from Nick Boles, Skills Minister at the recent AELP conference were upbeat stating that outside of the EU it will be more important than ever for the UK to invest in skills.

Key points made were;

  • The commitment by the Conservative Party for Apprenticeships is absolute, a need for a highly skilled and flexible workforce is vital
  • Timing for initial imminent Apprenticeship Levy guidance will be unexpectedly delayed due to Brexit, but the government will aim to publish before the summer break. The April 2017 start date will not be delayed
  • The Sainsbury’s Review will be published with its findings in near future
  • We’re in a growth industry, a fruitful ‘River of Apprenticeship Funding’ remains vital for the UK

For employers this will continue to mean that they can take control, choosing their apprenticeship provider and being able to influence the new apprenticeship standards as they develop in the trailblazer process.

The government has committed that there will be no delay in the April 2017 implementation date of the Apprenticeship Levy and the initial information expected in June will be published in the next few weeks.

The government was also due to publish the long-awaited Sainsbury review report setting out new technical professional education (TPE) routes into work, and a subsequent skills white paper, this is now also expected imminently.

In conclusion it would appear that little has changed after the decision to leave. George Osborne had suggested before the vote that an emergency budget would be required if the UK voted to leave, but has now stated that this will not be necessary. Government plans for apprenticeship reform appear to remain on track and the continued additional funding for apprenticeships appears to be unchanged including the target of 3 million apprenticeship starts by 2020.


Rob George, Director of RGFE.

About The author

“I have led commercial negotiations with government funding agencies including the SFA and Colleges and I believe I have the skills and ability to offer a range of services to Private Training Providers, College or NES Organisations to help effectively contract manage existing funding contracts together with accessing additional funding by way of growth of existing contracts or additional subcontracts. I now work with 10 training providers where I produce monthly detailed forecasts of funding revenues based on volume predictions across apprenticeships, QCF and employability delivery. In addition I provide short term and strategic funding advice to maximise opportunities. I also manage funding growth requests to the SFA and source or subcontract funding to ensure contract conditions are met.”

About RGFE

RGFE Limited was established by Rob George in January 2012.

“RGFE service provision is very personal and bespoke to each and every client. I see Funding Rules and Guidance as opportunity documents rather than compliance documents which I use to help providers plan short term tactics and long term strategy to meet the aims and objectives of their organisation”

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