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Question for Department for Education

UIN HL4585, tabled on 30 November 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to require employers to spend two-thirds of the funding for apprenticeships on under-25 year olds starting their careers.

Answered on

8 December 2021

It is a central principle of the apprenticeship programme that people can access apprenticeships throughout their lifetimes to help them upskill and re-train, as well as start out in their careers. Employers take the decisions about who they recruit as an apprentice, and which type and level of apprenticeship they offer.

To set an employer a requirement to spend two-thirds of funding for apprenticeships on those aged under 25 would restrict employers’ recruitment choice and reduce opportunities for older employees to retrain or progress.

We recognise the value of apprenticeships in helping young people starting out in their careers, and we are delivering a range of measures to support them and employers. To promote apprenticeships to students and parents our Apprentice Support and Knowledge is working with 56 schools to raise awareness and demonstrate the range of opportunities. We are also creating clearer progression routes for young people completing T Levels and traineeships so that more can move into an apprenticeship, with their training being accelerated to reflect their prior learning and qualifications.

To encourage employers to offer more apprenticeship opportunities to young people we offer them, and training providers, an additional £1,000 so they can deliver effective support to each 16-18 year old apprentice they take on. We also make it more attractive for the smallest employers across the country to employ an apprentice by paying 100% of their training and assessment costs. Alongside this we are encouraging all employers to create new apprenticeship opportunities through the £3,000 employer incentive for hiring any new apprentices. This incentive payment has been extended until the end of January 2022, and has so far supported over 127,000 apprentice starts, of which 77% were aged 16 to 24.