Apprentice funding to increase over this parliament

The Education Funding Agency has confirmed its commitment to increase the budget for apprenticeships over the current parliament, it has said in its annual funding letter.

While the letter gave no detail about the amount of increase, instead focusing on funding for students aged 16 to 19 for the 2016-17 academic year, it said that the apprenticeship budget will increase every year until 2020 in order to “fund a sustainable increase in high-quality apprenticeships”.

Responding, chief executive of the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP), Stewart Segal, said: “The growth commitments for apprenticeships and traineeships for the remainder of this parliament represent very good news for young people who need a greater number of vocational learning opportunities as post-16 options under Raising the Participation Age.

“It is particularly pleasing to see the EFA consider further growth funding of traineeships in the current year, and that the Department for Education now has in place a system for recognising in-year growth.

“AELP is also pleased that the core funding rate for 16 and 17 year olds is being maintained but this does mean that providers still have to manage cost increases.”