Apprenticeship guidance and further clarification on the apprenticeship levy
March 23, 2017
This week, the department for education (DfE) has produced guidance for schools and academies on apprenticeship reform. The guidance covers what the reforms to apprenticeship mean for schools and the type of apprenticeship that are currently being developed for a school setting.
Of particular importance for those governing, this guidance clarifies what type of LA school needs to pay the apprenticeship levy and what the money can be used for. The guidance confirms that all public, private and charity sector employers will contribute 0.5% of their wage bill over £3 million to a levy. This can then be accessed by the employer in the form of “credits” to fund apprenticeship programmes.
Even if your school does not have an individual wage bill of over £3 million, if it is part of a multi academy trust (MAT) or is a community or voluntary controlled LA school with a wage bill of over £3 million, it may have to contribute a proportional share. Any school in which the governing board is its own employer with a wage bill of under £3 million will not have to pay the levy. If you are a governor or trustee of a school with a wage bill of over £3 million, or the governing board is not the employer in your school, you should ensure that the school business manager is aware of the levy and provision has been made to factor this into the budget.
With several apprenticeship positions being developed for schools (including business manager apprenticeships and teaching apprenticeships), governing boards, whether their school has paid into the levy or not, may want to ask senior leaders how they intend to access and use apprenticeship funding.