Apprentices can access thousands of pounds a year in funded training – SkillsActive can help your business benefit from this, identify how much your staff could be eligible for and negotiate training that meets your needs.
Take the lead in all areas of your business – contact SkillsActive and make 2012 the year you take on an apprentice.
SkillsActive aims to help small businesses do big things with our Group Training Association (GTA). If you are a small or medium sized organisation in England, joining a GTA network could help increase the opportunities available to your staff.
Find out what it's really like to take on and train and apprentice in the first of a series of blogs by Jill Eaton, director of Stevenage Sporting Futures Team, and apprentice Luke Allen.
Don't fall at the first hurdle – contact SkillsActive and take the lead with Apprenticeships!
Discover more about what an Apprenticeship involves with our frequently asked questions. Please note that these details apply to England only; Apprenticeship formats vary from country to country within the UK.
An Apprenticeship is a work-based training programme where staff study for a nationally recognised qualification while gaining practical experience in a real job. Designed around the needs of employers, they can be used to train existing employees or hire new staff. Apprenticeships offer a structured programme that takes apprentices through the skills they need to do a job well.
Apprenticeships reduce unemployment, provide funding opportunities and lead to motivated staff. They are a great way to mould the future of an organisation by using government funding to gain highly trained staff.
Anyone can potentially be an apprentice as long as they are not in full-time education, with different age groups receiving different amounts of funded training. Apprenticeships are an ideal way for those who volunteer in sport to move into a paid role, gaining employment and a career in an area they are passionate about.
There is an Apprenticeship minimum wage of £2.60 per hour for those aged 16-18* and the national minimum wage applies to apprentices aged 19+.
Apprentices must be employed for at least 30 hours per week.
There are currently 13 different Apprenticeship frameworks giving options for the active leisure, learning and well-being sector, as well as 260 apprenticeship frameworks on offer overall. Apprenticeships are available at 3 levels:
Government funding is available to help pay for training costs incurred by the employer and provider**. This funding cannot be used to pay or subsidise the wage of the apprentice.
The amount of Apprenticeship funding available for training costs is divided into different age brackets:
Funding eligibility may also depend on the level of prior education and training the apprentice has completed. SkillsActive’s Funding Eligibility Service can help identify how much funding staff within an organisation may be eligible for.
Apprentices can be employed in many types of business, as long as they work for at least 30 hours a week. Apprentices must live and work in England for these types of Apprenticeship programme. SkillsActive can help employers find the right Apprenticeship programme for staff from all areas of a business and provide information on Apprenticeships in other parts of the UK.
An apprentice’s course of study will be set by a training provider, who will agree a training plan with an apprentice and their employer. As Apprenticeships are work-based, employers must also include on-the-job training.
Apprenticeships have no set timescale but generally take between one and four years to complete, depending on the level and other training factors. There is no set time for an Apprenticeship to start as they are delivered on a rolling basis.
Apprenticeships can cover many job roles in an organisation.
Specific job roles for Apprenticeship training in the active leisure, learning and well-being sector include:
SkillsActive can help identify how many of your staff are eligible for funding and evaluate the most appropriate training for all staff, not just those working in specific active leisure roles.
Other areas SkillsActive can help with include:
Further information about Apprenticeships in England can be found at the National Apprenticeship Service. Visit their website at
* Information correct as of January 2012.
** Amount of funding depends on the age and qualification level of the apprentice. Apprentices must be employed at least 30 hours a week.
The English teenager became the youngest winner of the Ladies' British Open Amateur Championship held at Royal Portrush when she took the title in June aged only 16, breaking a 112-year record.
Now 17 and in her second year of the AASE programme, Taylor, beat cyclist Lucy Garner and swimmer Eleanor Simmonds to the award.
The decision was made by a panel chaired by BBC Sport presenter John Inverdale.
The youngster made a memorable debut on the Ladies European Tour, qualifying for the Slovak Open and then hitting a hole in one during the first round and is ranked 20th in the women's amateur world rankings.
Taylor helped England win a silver medal at the European Girls Team Championships in the Junior Solheim Cup and was also a member of England's winning Ladies' Home Internationals team. She has been now been signed by Baylor College, Dallas, Texas, on a sports-based scholarship.
Speaking about her achievements, Ryder Cup player and world number 25 Ian Poulter said: "She is not only a great golfer but an extremely well-rounded young woman. Lauren is a deserving winner of the award and has my full support as she moves forward with her golfing career."
Steve Robinson, English Women's Golf Association national coach, added: "Lauren has always impressed me with her work-rate, attitude and ambition along with her desire to compete - the attributes all top-class athletes require.
"Lauren is a very talented, down to earth sportsperson and has a very bright future ahead of her."
In addition to Taylor, Garner and Simmonds, the original shortlist of 10 also included: Liam Broady (tennis), Sally Brown (athletics), Tom Daley (diving), Jack Laugher (diving), Pat McCormack (boxing), Laura Robson (tennis) and Anthony Watson (rugby union).
The award is made to the outstanding young sportsperson aged 16 or under on 1 January 2011. Previous winners include Daley, Andy Murray, Wayne Rooney, Simmonds and Theo Walcott.
SkillsActive can help you discover how many of your staff could access funding through apprenticeships. We can offer employers a simple online form, designed to enable you to identify who in your organisation can receive funding for undertaking a qualification and helping you save £1000s on staff training.
Funded training options may cover training for roles such as Fitness Instructor, Coach or Outdoor Activity Leader, with the flexibility to include additional skills such as customer service, business administration and leading teams.
SkillsActive can also support you with taking on new apprentices to develop your business further. If you want to reduce your training budget, simply complete your company details and an account manager will contact you with more information. We will create a tailored Funding Eligibility form which allows you to quickly and simply find out how much funded training your staff could access.
This service is free to SkillsActive employer partners and members of our Group Training Association (GTA) networks – our account managers can tell you more about how SkillsActive can support your business.
*Terms & Conditions
By submitting your details to enquire about Apprenticeship funding and the Funding Eligibility Service you acknowledge that SkillsActive will contact via telephone or email to fulfil your request.
SkillsActive Services ltd is dedicated to the needs of the organisations in the active leisure, learning and well-being sector. We aim to ensure that the services we offer meet the needs of those that we collectively represent and that those we work with are aware of all the opportunities that may be relevant to them. In order to achieve this, we may also contact you via email with information we believe may be of interest to you. You will have the opportunity to opt out of these at any time.
Your information may also be used to provide you with a personalised view of our websites giving you information and content that may be more relevant to you.
English apprenticeship providers and employers acting on the behalf of apprentices will soon be able to request Apprenticeship certificates online.
The Alliance of Sector Skills Councils is now the Certifying Authority for England using the Apprenticeship Certificates England (ACE) system, following changes to the Apprenticeship certification system.
From 10 February 2012, apprenticeship providers / employers acting on the behalf of apprenticeswill be able to use the ACE online system to request certificates from sector skills bodies (SSBs) and sector skills councils (SSCs), such as SkillsActive.
SSBs and SSCs will then issue Apprenticeship certificates, providing the Apprenticeship framework requirements have been met.
• On 10 February 2012, SkillsActive will begin issuing Apprenticeship certificates via ACE
• SkillsActive will continue to issue certificates against claims submitted on the current paper based system until 31 March 2012.
• After 1 April 2012, SkillsActive will only accept requests from people registered on the ACE system
To request a certificate using the ACE system, please register on the ACE website. SkillsActive will issue a username and password to you within 5 – 7 working days.
If you request an Apprenticeship certificate using the ACE system, you will receive the new certificates with gold (higher apprenticeship), silver (advanced apprenticeship) or bronze (intermediate apprenticeship) foil seals. If you use the paper based system, you will receive the older version of the certificate.
• Apprenticeship certification claims submitted via the paper based system until 31 March 2012 – £25
• Apprenticeship certification claims submitted via ACE – £22
activepassports to link with ACE
SkillsActive is working to integrate activepassports into the ACE certification process.
Providers will soon be able to use activepassports to track a linked apprentice’s qualifications and the new statutory Guided Learning Hour requirement.
Following further development, it is hoped activepassport will populate ACE with the required certification information. This will enable providers to better track and manage their apprentices and, ultimately, help streamline the certification process.
Please keep an eye on your email inbox for further details, including activepassport package pricing.
The Skills Funding Agency has advised SkillsActive that the ERR awards will no longer have a value on Learning Aims Reference Application as stand alone qualifications. However, the Skills Funding Agency has calculated an enhanced amount of funding into the competence qualification's (NVQ) funding to cover the delivery of the ERR component of the framework in our sector.
The funding has not disappeared – it is still there but has been captured in the main component of the framework.
SkillsActive apologies if this change has caused concern. However, it was brought in without advance consultation. We hope this notice allays your concerns.
Our National Skills Academy for Sport and Active Leisure works with the best training providers in our sector to deliver cost-effective, quality assured training solutions.
This section contains information and documents relevant to Apprenticeships in Northern Ireland. All files are in PDF format.