Hampshire County Council paves the way for care provider staff apprenticeships

Just a year after launching its Apprenticeship Levy Transfer scheme, Hampshire County Council has invested £1 million in new apprenticeships across the county. The Levy is an amount of money that, by law, large employers must set aside for apprenticeship training. If the full amount is not used in-house, or transferred, the remainder goes to the Treasury

Jan 13 2021

Of the 234 individual transfers approved by the end of December, 152 went to fund apprenticeships in the care sector, with 29 care employers. Priority has also been given to small and medium enterprises, public bodies such as local councils, the emergency services and construction companies. 

Councillor Patricia Stallard, Executive Lead Member for Children's Services and Young People, said: “Although we have all had to cope and respond to the challenges presented by Coronavirus, one of the success stories of 2020 has been the enthusiastic take-up of our levy offer by employers, particularly as without this assistance, some companies would be unable to offer apprenticeships at all.

“Both employers and staff benefit from apprenticeships, which help them to ensure they have the right skills for continued and future productivity, something that has become even more evident since the Covid-19 pandemic, with the ongoing need for high-quality care.”

Langdale Nursing Home in Gosport has benefited from a County Council Apprenticeship Levy transfer to upskill its care staff. Manager Rebecca McBride explained:

“As a business, we are committed to continuing professional development for our employees. We have a very diverse staff group who have had very different experiences in education prior to working with us – some positive, some negative. We recognise this and want to provide a positive learning experience which will enhance our business and their employment progression opportunities. The levy funding has meant that we can provide more training opportunities to our employees.”

The County Council has allocated up to £2m of its Levy funds, to be made available for apprenticeship transfers (subject to agreed criteria), available from December 2019 to March 2022

Employers seeking a share of the County Council’s transferred levy fund are encouraged to prioritise the offer of an apprenticeship to those who are vulnerable, such as young people who are not in education or training, the long-term unemployed, care leavers and people with special educational needs and disabilities.

To qualify, employers must ensure apprentices are a Hampshire resident or working in the county, and that the apprentice’s place of training and work will be within the Hampshire County Council local authority area (even if the employer’s head office is not). Further sector related criteria will also apply.

To find out more and apply for a Levy Transfer email apprenticeships@hants.gov.uk.