The ESFA has published on Bravo details of the new ITT for Non-levy Apprenticeship Funding. This replaces the previous ITT that the skills minister announced she was scrapping at the AELP National Conference. Therefore all providers that wish to offer apprenticeship training to non-levy paying employers need to participate in this new ITT. The questions in it are different and so it will not be a ‘copy and paste’ repeat exercise.
The new procurement will cover apprenticeship starts in non-levy paying employers from January 2018 to March 2019. The ESFA will not be going back out to market following conclusion of this procurement process.
Exclusively for AELP members only, AELP CEO Mark Dawe will be taking providers through the details of the ITT in a webinar on Wednesday, 2 August at 10.00am. Mark will also provide an update on other important issues relating to the roll-out of the apprenticeship reforms.
Responding to the ESFA announcement, Mark Dawe said,
‘It’s really fantastic that the skills minister has listened to AELP and its members in coming forward with a solution that should strike the right balance between stability of provision, promoting competition and offering choice for employers. With potentially a near 50% increase in the overall budget, this is a very positive step forward from the scrapped tender with a proper focus on existing capability and capacity in respect of good quality providers who have plenty of SMEs lined up wishing to offer apprenticeships. At the same time the approach allows for the possibility of growth for providers of all sizes, whether existing or new, who perform well against their contract and deliver good quality apprenticeships to learners within small businesses. Hopefully today’s announcement should significantly reduce the chances of ‘apprenticeship deserts’ appearing across the country following the big drop in starts since April.’