The Skills Funding Agency have published version one of Funding Rules 2012/13, replacing the various Funding Requirements documents that currently exist.

The forward states there will be an “updated document in May 2012 which will include the supporting audit evidence requirements. For the first time we will consolidate the Funding Rules and associated evidence requirements for all of our funded provision into one document. The document published in May will also give us the opportunity to make adjustments where areas of clarification are needed, particularly those where the sector thinks any specific rules could be made clearer.”

Paragraph 12 is likely to cause colleges some difficulties, as it states that “Where the Agency has made a full contribution to the costs of a Learner’s programme, Providers must not make compulsory charges to employers or Learners for any delivery of the learning activity funded by the Agency. This includes: administration, registration, assessment, materials or examination costs whether incurred directly by the Provider or charged by other organisations such as awarding organisations. This includes charges for identification passes, uniforms, tools and material where without them, a learner cannot complete and achieve their learning aim.”

The Agency will base future years’ funding allocations on the performance of each Provider in getting unemployed people into work.”

New for the 2012/13 are rules concerning minimum durations for apprenticeships aged 19+, which was announced on Sunday.

Providers are likely to want clarification on paragraph 88, which states: “Providers should not claim the full amount of funding available for an Apprenticeship completing in fewer than 12 months and will not ever be able to claim the achievement element of an Apprenticeship not withstanding proven and documented prior learning with a duration of fewer than six months in any circumstances.”

The Agency have also confirmed that they have scrapped plans for an Outcome Incentive Payment and will instead pilot Job Outcome Payments. The document states that “ten per cent of the rate will be paid where an eligible Learner leaves without achieving the learning aim but enters work.” In effect the 10% Job Outcome Payment will opporate as a reduced fine, as it only applies when the provider is not paid the 20% achievement funding. However, paragraph 37 will need some further explanation as it simply states:  “The Agency will base future years’ funding allocations on the performance of each Provider in getting unemployed people into work.”

To download the Funding Rules 2012/13 document click here.

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9 Comments

  1. Sarah H

    AS expected for ‘Basic English and maths'( wait around long enough and all the old terms return, ( remember ABE & ALBSU?)

    However re ESOL – does this mean that women on ESOL courses who have no intention of returning to work, but wish to have English skills for family support/cohesion & integration and to support the development of their children, are NOT eligible for co funded learning?

  2. Elizabeth H

    Link every apprentice to a NEW OR CHANGED JOB ROLE??? I think this will need some further clarification. Most learners are already employed and wishing to gain a qualification, just another way of the government trying to FIX the issue that appretnceships are not creating more NEW JOBS!!!! More RED tape and barrier to what I can see as only going to reduce the number of apprenticeships.

  3. Elizabeth H

    Ive looked at P83 and the table clearly states they will be co funded, but I think when they produce further guidance arouynd eligilbility they will expect the employer and learner to declare that this is a newly appointed post or vacany within a set period time maybe 3 months. If this is the case then it makes it even harder to recruit apps and the gap between targets set by SFA will signifcantly decrease from colleges and provders, which will result in further under perfromace. Most of our learners are currently already employed and may have been with theor employer a few years!!!!

  4. Dave Hall

    There is very little doubt that the statement on P22 “Appeniceships are designed for people of any age starting work or starting a new job role” will dramatically reduce the number of (mainly adult) Apprenticeship starts next year. Pity we didn’t know this prior to next years allocations being aggreed.
    Presumably the updated document to be published in May will include the supporting audit evidence reuirements including apprenticeship eligibility?

    • Elizabeth H

      I agree completely, the majority of Apps that we have are all 19+ a lot are 25+ and they are doing new qualifications but have in fact been in the job role for some time. Again another way that halts providers accessing funding for those that need it. How many new jobs are there out there? If a new position is to be created to access a 25+ apprenticeship then it’s another document to create to STATE THIS IS A NEW JOB ROLE!!!!! This will not create new jobs only create an extra document for employers to DECLARE they are now in a new position!!!!

  5. I’ve got a couple of queries – p76.2 – does this mean that childminders and foster carers who are predominantly self employed will now be eligible for apprenticeships and p213 – what exactly do they mean by “non-employed apprentices”? Didn’t think we’d had any of those for a few years now!

    • Sue, it does state these at the bottom of this page, ive checked and they are saying it does not include any other industry. We too have childminder requests and we have to turn away!