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Apprentices: Standards

Question for Department for Education

UIN HL11250, tabled on 8 December 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with independent apprenticeship providers about improving the quality of apprenticeship training.

Answered on

21 December 2020

We have made apprenticeships longer and better, with more off-the-job training and proper assessment at the end. All new learners starting an apprenticeship from 1 August 2020 must now start on a high-quality, employer-designed standard. Each apprentice will undertake rigorous and independent end-point assessment to ensure they can perform in the occupation they have been trained in and can demonstrate the duties, and requirements set out in the occupational standard.

We continue to work closely with providers, employers, and sector bodies to improve the quality of apprenticeship training. Ofsted inspections and visits give providers public judgements about the quality of their teaching and learning. The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is in contact with independent training providers as part of its normal contract management process, which includes discussing the quality of providers’ training (apprenticeships and other provision) and, where necessary, taking action where risks to quality are identified.

ESFA officials also have regular contact with senior figures in the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) to discuss emerging priorities around high-quality training, and test future policy ideas with some of their members to shape the impact and benefits of new initiatives before they are launched.

We will continue to work with employers, training providers, the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education and its Quality Alliance of key stakeholders, including AELP, to help boost apprenticeship quality and make sure more people get the skills they need to get ahead.