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Apprentice funding extended

The Apprenticeship Matching Service (AMS) delivered by ConstructionSkills, is extending the funding available to employers for taking on a displaced apprentice.
The news means that more employers will now be eligible to receive £1,000 for taking on an apprentice who has lost his previous position because of the recession.

In a swift response to high numbers of young apprentices being made unemployed because of the tough economic conditions, the sector skills council for the construction industry launched the AMS service early in 2009 to help employers retain their apprentices or ( when this was not possible) match displaced apprentices with new employers in the area.

Previously, only those employers who had taken on an apprentice in the last 12 months of their training could receive the extra money, although all displaced apprentices have been put on a national register, in a co-ordinated attempt to re-house them.

In order to help fund the service and attract even more employers to take on apprentices, ConstructionSkills secured £1m of extra funding from the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) in July 2009. Having reviewed the current business climate, the NAS and ConstructionSkills have decided to extend this offer.

Now, employers who take on a displaced apprentice and meet the terms and conditions laid down by the funding contract will receive £1,000 of additional funding. The extended offer is open for all apprentices who have:

  • completed college induction training

  • registered for their framework with CAA or other approved body

  • completed a period of site training to allow collection of work-based evidence

  • 'We're thrilled to be able to open up this offer to a far wider audience,' said Adele Alcock, apprenticeship matching service manager for ConstructionSkills.

    'The AMS team has already re-housed more than a third of apprentices that have been laid-off and there are more we can help, but we need the support of employers.

    'We understand that employers are having a tough time at the moment and that taking on new staff might not be seen as a plausible option financially. However, I must stress that apprentices add significant value to a business and its bottom line, through their determination, hard work, enthusiasm and loyalty.

    'This is especially the case for displaced apprentices as they have already received some learning and will possess a certain degree of on-site competency already. The money is there and we want employers to access it; taking on an apprentice could be the best investment they make in 2010.'

    Apprenticeship Matching Service Helpline: 0844 875 0086.
    8 January 2010


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