Treasury announces £3k top-up for 13 ‘growth sector’ apprenticeships

Training providers will have to deliver a minimum number of starts to access the cash

Training providers will have to deliver a minimum number of starts to access the cash


Thirteen specially selected apprenticeships will receive a £3,000 per-apprentice funding boost from April, the Treasury has announced. 

This is part of a two-year £50 million pilot for certain apprenticeships in what Treasury ministers deem are “growth sectors” and will mean some apprenticeships will attract up to £30,000 per apprentice.

The chosen standards include laboratory technician, science manufacturing technician and machining technician. See the table below for the full list. 

The extra cash will come on top of usual funding bands but training providers will need to deliver a minimum of 15 starts to access it. 

Using apprenticeship starts numbers from 2022/23, the top-ups would cost at least £6.7 million per year from the growth fund pilot. It’s not yet been announced what the remaining pilot funding will be spent on. 

It means some apprenticeships, such as pipe welder, electrical power networks engineer and machining technician could attract up to £30,000 per apprentice from April including the £3,000 growth pilot top-up.

The Treasury has said it expects the boost will fund capital investments in these sectors, which are typically not eligible for government funding.

Further guidance is expected later this month. 

‘Not just colleges’

Gareth Davies, exchequer secretary to the Treasury, said in a written statement to Parliament today: “The pilot will boost funding for eligible providers delivering 13 high-value advanced manufacturing and engineering, green and life sciences apprenticeship standards.”

This comes ahead of this Wednesday’s spring budget as part of a package of measures announced this morning for the manufacturing industry. 

Simon Ashworth, director of policy at the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) said: “Although the pilot of 13 initial standards in phase one is quite narrow, what is encouraging is that capital investment is being supported as part of this pilot funding – and is open to all provider types and not just colleges.

“This is something AELP have been calling for and we are pleased this has been recognised by DfE and HMT. ITPs deliver the majority of apprenticeships, so we welcome this agnostic approach to extra funding to support growing additional capacity in the apprenticeship programmes.”

Announcing the growth pilot in the autumn statement, chancellor Jeremy Hunt said the pilot was to test “ways to increase the number of apprentices in engineering and other key growth areas where there are shortages.”

The Treasury said the £3,000 payments are intended for course equipment, machinery and other capital expenses. 

Further eligibility criteria for training providers is expected later this month.

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  1. Heidi

    Incredibly frustrating that yet again more funding is being given to standards which are already fairly well funded but L2 and L3 Senior/Healthcare Support Worker, which attract only £5k over 27 months, have not made this list.

    Can we honestly say that healthcare is not a key sector?

    • More money should be made available for the Health Care sector Heidi but it isn’t a targeted growth sector because as providers we continue to deliver these standards in high numbers despite the funding challenges, often subsidising our delivery to ensure we maintain the quality of each programme!

  2. Michael Lomas

    Once again high-tech apprenticeships gain further funding support for the delivery, whilst low level funded apprenticeships still suffer with many providers making decisions to no longer deliver these as they are no longer financially viable. Looking at the NHS with 100,000 vacancies nationally, isn’t this a priority area. Continuous lack of vision and ideas from both the education department and NHS England means there is unlikely to be any change soon.

  3. Andrew Turner

    The lack of support for Level 2 programmes is frightening and we’ll soon see a raft of data that says starts on level 2 and under 18’s is falling even further. No doubt ‘lack of school access’ will be blamed once more.

    Will somebody in the Ivory Tower please take note that the Apprenticeship offer for anyone who is young or didn’t do that well in GCSE’s is now virtually non-existent?

  4. Drip feed optics!

    A fraction of the £50m promised on carefully chosen standards that, while they may be important, have relatively low starts volumes.

    The £50m itself is a fraction of the billions of underspend of the apprenticeship budget and more billions in levy receipts that never made it as far as the apprenticeship budget.

    It’s the equivalent of someone taking £50 from your pocket, then expecting praise when they give you back 5 pence.