The Skills Funding Agency (SFA) has announced that it will fully fund all “high quality” 16 to 18 apprenticeships from August 2015 to March 2016.

The announcement, which also covered traineeships, was made on the agency’s website this afternoon.

It said: “We will fully fund all high-quality 16 to 18 apprenticeship and SFA-funded 16 to 18 traineeship delivery from August 2015 to March 2016.

“We have based this on your individualised learner record (ILR) R07 data collection returns up to  March 4. This is in addition to £25m growth awarded through performance-management point 1.

It added: “We will continue to review the funding position through to performance-management point two, which launches this month.

“Shortly, we will set out further information on the process for requesting growth. This is in line with the timings set out in our operational performance management rules 2015 to 2016.

“For further information, please contact your central delivery service adviser.”

It comes after FE Week exclusively reported this morning that extra money looked set to be made available for 16 to 18 apprenticeships following today’s budget announcement.

The article correctly reported it was unlikely Mr Osborne would announce the 16 to 18 apprenticeships increase to MPs, but it would be confirmed via a subsequent SFA bulletin.