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Funding Available for Training

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Have you heard about the Advanced Learner Loan?

If you're aged 19 or over (24 or over if your course begins before 1 August 2016) and want to study A Levels, an Access to Higher Education Diploma, or a Level 3 to 6 (Level 3 or 4 only if your course begins before 1 August 2016) Vocational Qualification, you'll need to pay your college or training organisation for the cost of your course.

NOTE: The fees quoted on this website are a general guide only and may be subject to change.

The Advanced Learner Loan is a government-funded loan to help learners. It's easy to apply for, doesn't take your household income into account and doesn't involve a credit check.

Here are some key facts about the loan:

  • Repayments are linked to what you earn and not how much you borrowed.
  • You only have to start making repayments when you've finished your course and you're earning over £21,000 a year (which is £404 a week or £1,750 a month). Until then you don't need to pay back anything, but you can make voluntary repayments at any time.
  • You pay 9% of the money you earn over £21,000, before tax. For example, if you earn £22,000 a year, your monthly repayment will be £7 a month; and if you earn £35,000 a year, it will be £105 per month.
  • Interest is charged on a sliding scale between the Retail Price Index (RPI) and RPI +3%, depending on how much you earn.
More about Advanced Learner Loans

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Apprenticeship Levy

The way that apprenticeships are funded by the government in England is changing in spring 2017

How is the funding changing?

Some large employers will be required to contribute to a new apprenticeship levy but there will be changes to the funding for apprenticeship training for all employers in some way.

All employers operating in the UK, whether you pay the apprenticeship levy or not will experience changes

Please note: The levy will not affect the way you fund training for apprentices who started an apprenticeship programme before 1 May 2017.

From 1st May 2017, some employers will be required to pay for apprenticeships either through the apprenticeship levy or through a co-investment cash contribution.

Levy Payers the Facts:

  • Any UK employer, in any sector, with a PAYE bill of more than £3 million per year is liable to pay the new levy
  • The levy will be 0.5% of the pay bill, paid through PAYE
  • There is an allowance of £15,000 to offset against levy liability
  • Employers will be paid a top-up of 10% of their levy back by the government.

If your payroll is less than £3 million a year, you can still hire apprentices!

Read the current guidance on the apprenticeship levy

Non Levy Payers

If you do not pay the levy, you won't need to use the apprenticeship service to pay for apprenticeship training and assessment until at least 2018.  So do not worrry nearer the time we will be able to give you more information and advice available on how to do so.

When the new funding system comes in effect in May 2017, you can take control and choose the:

  • training you'd like your apprentices to receive
  • an approved training provider
  • an assessment organisation

By using the registers available on the apprenticeship service.

Each apprenticeship framework and standard will be allocated to 1 of 15 new funding bands. Employers and providers will agree a price for the apprenticeship up to the cap of the allocated band.  

Payments for training will be made directly to the provider and you will be able to agree a payment schedule and spread it over the duration of the apprenticeship. 

Most employers will be asked to make a 10% contribution to the cost of this training and the government will pay the rest (90%), up to the maximum amount of funding available for that apprenticeship. This is the upper limit of the funding band will cap the maximum price that government will ‘co-invest' towards. 

If you are an employer with less than 50 employees and are recruiting a 16-18-year-old apprentice, you will not be required to make any cash contribution.

Employers will also receive a £1,000 incentive payment, to be paid through the provider, for hiring a 16-18 apprentice.