Is Your Training Apprenticeship Ready? Q&A Webinar Recording


We held an apprenticeship webinar Q&A on Thursday June 8th with a panel of experts including Sally Garbett from St Christopher's Hospice, Lucy Blinko from Skills for Health, Gail Richards from North Devon Healthcare Trust and Jo Sutton from Key Training.

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Session Transcript:

You can find the session transcript below:

David: Hello, everyone. Thank you very much for signing to this webinar "Is Your Training Apprenticeship Ready?" I'll start by going through the schedule for the webinar and a little bit of housekeeping. So before we start, everyone is on mute. That's hopefully not…nothing against you. We're very happy you're here, lovely people. We just don't want any background noise, any [inaudible 00:00:40] or office [SP] thing in the background. If you do have a question, there is a little [inaudible 00:00:46] or chat box available to you. So just please, at any time during the webinar, pop your question in that chat box and we will attempt to answer it. The first people who pop their questions in, we'll put them…we'll try and do those a priority. So if you have a question, please put it in as soon as you can.

This webinar will be recorded. We already had one question on that so that's good. So we'll send out the recording for you to share with your colleagues or to look over again. So great. So what this webinar is about? Oh, I just need to unmute our colleagues who will be able to speak. So let me just do that for you, Joe [SP] and Gail. Very good. So the webinar is we'll do some instructions for your panelists and myself. Then we'll have an overview of apprenticeships, just a background refresher so we're all on the same page. And then we'll go through some of the Q&A. We've already had three so thank you very much for those people who sent through their questions and answers. And then towards the end of this session, we'll go open questions for anyone who has questions that have been raised throughout the session or anything you've had beforehand.

So myself, I'm the Skills Platform Product Manager. Skills Platform is a sector-specific training marketplace so where you can showcase your training wares [SP]. It's operated by the National Skills Academy for Health and Skills for Health. And it's a place also where the Skills for Health quality market providers can showcase their wares. And we'll talk a little bit about the Skills for Health Quality Market Standard later as well. We have within the room Lucy Blinko, Skills for Health Qualifications and Apprenticeship Manager. You want to say hi, Lucy?

Lucy: Hi. Good morning, everyone.

David: And we have Sally Garbett from St. Christopher's Hospice, Vocational Programs Manager.

Sally: Good morning, everyone.

David: We also have Gail Richards, Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust, Training Manager and Apprenticeship Lead. Gail?

Gail: Good morning, everyone.

David: Good to hear, Gail. And we have Joseph Sutton from Key Training, Business Development Manager.

Joe: Good morning, everybody.

David: Very good. We're all here. Good. So on we go. Lucy will now start us up with a little bit of background about the new apprenticeship standards.

Lucy: Hi. So, apologies, if you're an old hand at trailblazing, but I want to just give some background information so that everybody on the call is kind of at the same basic level of knowledge. So just to let you know, the trailblazers and apprenticeship standards is an England-only development. The other cultures in the U.K. are not in the midst of changing their apprenticeship at the moment. So these new standards have come out of the 2012 Richard Review of Apprenticeship. And that review found that many employers were disgruntled and didn't feel that their apprentices were job-ready at the end of their apprenticeship.

So this led to a government response which included the development of new apprenticeship standards. This is happening across all sectors, not just health. So it's all of the apprenticeship standards in England. So groups that developed the apprenticeship standards are known as "trailblazers." I think that's because the first ones were trailblazing but, just generally, everybody is now known as a trailblazer. As many of you… Sorry, [inaudible 00:04:37]. As many of you are within the NHS, you will know that there are significant and challenging targets that have been set around apprenticeship start numbers. And some of those are up on the screen now that you can see, that we're looking for more than 100,000 apprenticeship start the NHS by 2020, which is a real challenge for all of us. And alongside that, there's the new funding system by the levy.

[Inaudible 00:05:10]. Thank you. So one of the most important things about the Richard Review is that it's very much about placing more emphasis on teaching as well as on assessments, very keen to avoid any kind of textbook exercise or that the only time the student is spending, you know, with an assessor there being a fact and not actually being taught any new learning. So, overall, it's very much about making sure there is significant new learning for the apprentice and that being taught as well as being assessed.

Okay. So the new standards are designed by employers. The Richard Review is really keen on putting employers in control and in the driving seat around apprenticeship agenda. Skills for Health's role, we've been commissioned by Health Education England to offer a range of support to many of the healthcare trailblazers. In some instances, we're offering full project support and facilitation. And in others, we're just providing information, advice and guidance. So that's why we're involved. Even though we're not employers, we are round the table facilitating the process in many instances.

So the new trailblazer process is overseen by government via the Institute for Apprenticeship. And during the development phase of new standards, there are a series of points at which they give the go-ahead or turn down the progress of a particular standard or assessments done. All of the apprenticeships must be at least 12 months long. The documents are up to…well, now it's just changed. They're up to three pages now but you will find ones that are longer, if you have a core and an option standard [inaudible 00:06:59] the senior healthcare support worker standard or the registered nurse standard which will have options for them.

The documents are designed to be read by apprentices and their families as well as by training providers and people within the sector. So the language used should be straightforward, plain English and easy to understand, avoiding acronyms which we all love in the NHS. So we have to be quite careful that we don't put too many of those in. A standard describes the skills, knowledge, values and behaviors that an apprentice will achieve during an apprenticeship. Essentially, it describes what they will look at like at the end of that apprenticeship.

In terms of the standards themselves, there are new elements that have been added. So there is now an endpoint assessment process which is entirely separate from the on-program learning. This is really different from what we had before with the framework. The aim of the endpoint assessment is to assess the apprentice holistically across the whole standard. And unlike the old framework where you're either competent or not, the new standards are graded Pass, Merit or Distinction. There's still standardized requirements around English and Math if the apprentice has not already achieved their Level 2. And, finally, just to let you know that the SAFE frameworks are due to be withdrawn by 2020.

The new standards, unlike the Safe frameworks which were predominantly at Levels 2, 3 and some at 4 and 5, these new…the new apprenticeship standards include much higher levels and many of the health sector standards that we are working on at the moment will, in fact, be at Degree or Master's level.

David: Okay. Sally Garbett from St. Christopher's is now just gonna go over some top-level things about what has changed with apprenticeships.

Sally: Okay. Well, the news is good. And I've got a background as a training provider as well as now working with an employer. So I think it's good news from both our perspectives. So the first point, the same funding from age 19. As you well all know, I'm sure, listening, the funding used to drop significantly at 23 and with less than 50%. The employer was expected to contribute the additional funds but often that didn't happen. And I think provision had to, you know, be cut to accommodate the funding. So that's changed. So the funding now from age 19 is the same. And so that means it doubled for some people.

Full or part-time zero hours, you no longer have to be doing 30 hours to do an apprenticeship. There are rules clearly in the funding rules about how you calculate the additional time a part-timer would do to extend the apprenticeship pro rata. Lucy, I think, mentioned, the development of existing and new staff. There must be significant new learning. So you need to look at the standard and be able to prove that that person is learning significantly more and that they're taught. Lucy's mentioned the degree level apprenticeships, but the good news is that graduates with degrees in other areas not relating to the apprenticeship they want to do are now eligible to be funded.

In the past, if you have a higher qualification than the apprenticeship you wanted to do, you couldn't be funded. Now you can. This is [inaudible 00:10:22] news. You know it's a real job with a salary and that there's study alongside it. And we'll talk more later about the 20% off-the-job training and what that actually includes. That's actually training, as Lucy mentioned, not assessment. We'll come back to that.

David: So I think that was available. We sent out this link before the start of the webinar which is the new Healthcare Apprenticeship Standards Online where you can find all the relevant apprenticeship standards within healthcare at the moment. So there's the link there. Again, we'll send that out after the webinar as well. So moving onto our questions, the first question we have is what opportunities are there for apprenticeships in healthcare? So for this question, we're going to Sally Garbett, St. Christopher's Hospice.

Sally: Okay. Do you have a slide on that to go with that Shape of Caring slide?

David: Yes, I do.

Sally: Great. Okay. Thank you. So what you've got on your screen now, obviously, there are...let's start with the obvious. There's lots of [inaudible 00:11:19] outside healthcare and NHS employs care homes, nursing homes, care agencies, hospices. We all employ administrative accountants, you know, caterers, hospitality, all sorts. So you've got all those opportunities. The other big opportunity is learning and development. It's not a standard yet. It's a framework but if we want to deliver quality apprentices, it would be a really sound plan, and we're doing this to qualify people in departments where they'll be apprentices through a learning and development apprenticeship. And they can get an assessment or a teaching qualification. So as the employer, they can support you with a provider to deliver a quality outcome.

Then let's talk about the health route. What you see in front of you is a diagram from the Shape of Caring report, which I would suggest you get a hold of, because the significant thing is that these apprenticeships in health and in adult care pave the way to entry to nurse training, to a new role as a nursing associate and above to be achieved for the first time through apprenticeships where you can earn and learn. So that's a big development. And it should probably help you attract a different group of people into apprenticeships who aspire to progress. It may well help with recruitment [inaudible 00:12:40].

The final point is that do check. If you're a provider used to delivering health and social care and that's the framework that you've delivered, you will find that that has been replaced by a standard which is about adult care. And it isn't about [inaudible 00:12:56]. It's about adult care. It's almost Hillary care, social care. And it has nothing to do with young people [inaudible 00:13:00] either. So if you are working with nursing homes or care homes, you may want to look at the health standards because they may well meet the employer's needs better.

Lucy: Senior.

Sally: I've just been prompted by Lucy of the healthcare support worker and the senior healthcare support worker and the assistant practitioner standards, but those are the ones you want to look at. And they're on the [inaudible 00:13:22] Lucy's given you.

David: Thanks very much, Sally. Okay. Onto our next question is how are you responding to the government targets to help increase the number of apprenticeships? So for this, I'm [inaudible 00:13:33] Gail, North Devon Healthcare Trust, who is a [inaudible 00:13:37] and also an [inaudible 00:13:36] in both camps. Onto Gail.

Gail: Thank you. The way that we're gonna be addressing this locally is that for all our clinical and non-clinical Band 2 staff, those posts will be advertised as apprenticeship positions. We will be speaking to recruiting managers. And if they're unable to support apprenticeship due to service need and skill mix, then we'll have those discussions. But, otherwise, they will all be reverted to those Band 2 apprenticeship positions.

Currently, we review all the vacancies throughout the organization. That's from Bands 2 right the way up, looking at apprenticeship opportunities. So, for example, if there's a Band for medical secretary position, we can look at that and look at that and convert that into an apprenticeship on the new standards going forward. So, again, there's lots of opportunities that are on the horizon. Also, as a panel, we now need to review our existing staff. So where people are looking for CIPD training or training for a new post that they're going into, again, we have to be very clear that it's significant learning. But we will be seeing if an apprenticeship standard could be matched to that learning need and to put them with a training provider. Or, otherwise, we will be training them ourselves as an employer provider.

David: Thank you very much, Gail. Okay. Onto our next question. Why do some apprenticeships no longer require the apprentice to complete a qualification? So we're gonna go into Lucy Blinko, Skills for Health.

Lucy: Okay. So the government guidance is that, generally speaking, apprenticeship standards should not incorporate qualifications. So unless you're developing a degree apprenticeship, you can only mandate qualifications if they meet some specific criteria. And that criteria is holding a qualification and is a legal or statute requirement. So it may be a license to practice or the qualification is required for professional registration or the qualification is widely-used as a hard [inaudible 00:15:49] when applying for jobs and the occupation involved and without it, an apprentice would be at a significant disadvantage if they tried to progress in their career.

So when you go onto our website, HASO, that's the link that David mentioned, you'll be able to see that when you click onto each standard, whether it includes a qualification or not, and so, for an example, the healthcare support worker standard does not contain a qualification because we were unable to meet any of those three criteria that I just mentioned. But the senior healthcare support worker one, although those workers [inaudible 00:16:31] registered, we could prove that actually the qualification is used as a [inaudible 00:16:38] when they're applying for a job and that actually in terms of progression, they'd be disadvantaged if they didn't have a qualification.

So that's why there is one there and not one at Level 2.

David: Thank you very much, Lucy. Onto our next question which, again, I need to link back to that to find out more of all those things. So why has the funding for standards increased? And for this we're gonna go to Sally.

Sally: Okay. So there's a lot of news about funding having gone down. The funding per apprenticeship has gone up if you take into account the rules about ages, etc. So the changes are…the two reasons really, increased content and the endpoint assessment. So the increased content, Lucy has already made reference to the fact that apprenticeships contain skills, knowledge, behaviors. And those must be taught. And there's a requirement for off-the-job training, which we'll come back to later.

And the other thing is the endpoint assessment brings an additional cost. And that obviously comes out of the funding. So if you're funding for an apprenticeship, if you work out it's going to cost 3,000 pounds and the endpoint assessment is 500 pounds, you've only got two-and-a-half left to do the delivery. And do also remember that the functional skills is funded separately. So that wouldn't come out of the pot. So, overall, your funding's gone up. It's good news but that's because you've got more to deliver.

David: Thank you very much, Sally. Okay. Next question. How do you charge for all the on-program apprenticeship training as employees deliver? So over to you, Sally, again.

Sally: You'd be [inaudible 00:18:13]. Right, okay. Well, the first thing is to say that the cap, the funding band, is not the cost of the apprenticeship. You have to work that out. And then the employer will either pay 10% of that cost or they'll pay through their levy for what you've decided it costs. So you need to work out the delivery model with the employer and include your off-the-job and your near-the-job training and the other costs like the qualifications, if [inaudible 00:18:44]. Once you've got the costs, then, obviously, if the employer is going to deliver part of it and they meet your due diligence requirements and you are going to work with them as a subcontractor, they can deliver some of that.

So it's a partnership. It's team-working. So that's how you need to charge for it.

David: Okay. Thank you. What advice do you have for an employer provider who hasn't been through Ofsted before? So we've got some advice here from Joe at Key Training.

Joe: Brilliant. Thank you. So just to give you all a little bit of background, we work with lots of different employers, not just in the health sector, but we're looking at people who are taking on a premises-ops for the existing members of staff and business admin and customer service or management. With the levy, we are starting to work with a lot of companies looking to spend their levy. And I've spoken to a lot of our larger clients in regards to them becoming employer providers. Our general advice to them has been to really evaluate whether setting up their own training division is worth the cost due to inspections and compliance with Ofsted.

The big question is, is their levy bill big enough to warrant setting this up? From my personal perspective, I wouldn't recommend any employer to set up their own apprenticeship and training division if their levy bill was less than a million pounds. The task at hand really in regards to Ofsted, unless they pay a contract, is huge. And any bill less than this, I really would recommend to a point-of-training provider to fulfill training in apprenticeships needs.

With that, you also need to consider the cost of administration and training log software which really isn't cheap. But should you decide to go ahead being your own provider, I'd recommend appointing a dedicated quality manager who understands the common inspection framework for Ofsted. This person should also act as a nominee when Ofsted do decide to come and inspect. I'd also recommend joining local provider networks where you'll get a lot of experience from other people who have been inspected before and will get you a good understanding of what Ofsted are looking for.

And there also plenty of outside consultants who offer nominee training so that would definitely be worth investing in, too. Personally, I haven't heavily been involved in an inspection before. However, [inaudible 00:20:53] there is nothing like an Ofsted inspection. It's very difficult to prepare for but the points I've covered are a really good place to start.

David: Okay. Thanks so much. I think we've got some additional advice on this one from Sally or Gail.

Gail: [Crosstalk] Hi, Gail. Hi. Just to say, when I attended a meeting a couple of months ago in Bristol held by the SSA, we were talking about Ofsted. And there was a lot of employers in the room that were new to training and they had currently been inspected. And they didn't actually find it very onerous. They were very supported and they said that they weren't trying to get them to jump through hoops. So just a bit of reassurance there that they are trying to work with us, I think.

David: Thank you, Gail.

Sally: They just said, as well, that it's worth mentioning, if you go to the Quality Mark, Skills for Health Quality Mark, it requires you to meet rigorous standards about certain procedures in terms of your learning and how people gain access to the programs and the process that is going through. Those link very nicely to some of the inspection criteria. So that will help you hugely, if you've been through the Quality Mark approval process. And the other thing is just to say if you're an employer provider but you are acting as a subcontractor, you're only delivering a little bit of the apprenticeship as a subcontractor to a lead provider. The lead provider will manage and help you through the inspection process because they manage that for you.

David: Okay, guys Thank you very much. Onto the next question which is what can be included in off-the-job learning? Sally, again.

Sally: Right. Sorry. Okay. It is good news. Off-the-job learning isn't just, you know, some people stay one day in the classroom because that's 20%. No. Off-the-job learning is the learning that's required that is away from the apprentice's job but it can be in their place of work. So it might be skills-based training where there is practicing models and they're practicing and developing those skills. That's off-the-job training just as much as sitting in a classroom is off-the-job training.

You might include e-learning. You might include distance learning but you can only include a very small proportion of that in the overall off-the-job learning. You can't deliver all the off-the-job learning through distance learning or e-learning. That's not permitted. And we had a question. Are functional skills part of this 20%? Strictly speaking, no. They don't count towards the 20% because they're funded separately. However, it would be very sensible to embed your functional skills learning within the overall training because then you link it to the subject.

David: Thanks very much, Sally. Okay. Next question is can an employer put existing staff with existing qualifications, e.g., degree-holders, onto an apprenticeship program? So off to the lady who knows this very well, Lucy.

Lucy: Okay. So in short, the answer's yes, as long as the apprenticeship represents significant e-learning so things like a career change or significant change in responsibility or level of responsibility. Then, yes, they can do an apprenticeship. As Sally's mentioned, the age range is no longer restrictive so older workers can do an apprenticeship as well. And just to also say that on HASO, as Sally's mentioned, in the health sector, you've got...

David: [Crosstalk] that HASO is the....

Lucy: Oh, sorry.

David: Healthcare and Apprenticeship Standard Online website which we're gonna link up to.

Lucy: On the website because not all of the standards that we use in the health sector are actually health-related [inaudible 00:24:24] meant for IT, for example, facilities, those kinds of things. Where we know that standards are commonly used in the health sector, they're also available from the same website. So you'll be able to look there for inspiration as to what other things you could perhaps [inaudible 00:24:41].

David: That's lovely. Thank you very much. Next question is how can you make your apprenticeship training more appealing to health sector employers? So with insights on this, we've got Gail at North Devon.

Gail: I think it's important for employers to make sure that the trainer provider that they choose has either got a very good Ofsted report or, again, they've been through the Quality Mark. In our experience as well, I think they have to have a good understanding of our organizational requirements because the way we deliver service or meet our trainer needs vary so much. They need to be flexible in their delivery methods. They will have to ensure though that 20% off-the-job training is covered but, again, whether or not training is delivered in the workplace or whether our trainers go out on site, all that needs to be discussed.

Again, for an employer, I have to be very sure that the people offering the training have got good quality of training with their assessing. And another point really for me locally because we're in North Devon, it's quite hard finding a training provider that can deliver sufficient apprenticeship standards. So those are the points that we've sort of been working through locally. I don't know if anyone's got anything else that they would like to add.

David: Sally, have you got any as an employer as well?

Sally: Well, just as an employer I was going to say I work with hospices across the country and, sadly, many providers are sort of saying they'll be ready in September to deliver the standards. But we've had money in our account since May for the standards. I think partnership, what Gail said, partnership is really important. The employers are going to be able to work really well with the providers to deliver a quality model and it's about partnership [crosstalk].

David: Thanks very much, Sally. Okay. How do you train part-time apprenticeships? Over to Sally.

Sally: Okay. So great news. Part-time apprenticeships are allowed. You train them in exactly the same way. I'll come back to that but the first is how long do they work? The guidance in the funding rules is about how you calculate how much extra you extend the duration pro-rata. So the sensible thing to do, I think, is you put the group learning that everybody will do, regardless of being full-time or part-time, in that cohort. You front load the group learning. So maybe do that in the first 12 to 24 months, depending on the apprenticeship. And then for part-time staff who are going to be on the apprenticeship longer, they can develop the experiential learning. They've got longer.

And so the stuff that depends on numbers and a cohort in a room, do that upfront. And then the individual learning that the people do in the workplace, they can do that in the remaining time they have.

David: Great. Thank you very much, Sally. Who will manage endpoint assessments and what would be required to get the learner ready? So we're going to Gail.

Gail: Firstly, the assessment must be independent of both the employer and the provider. The employer needs to select an organization to deliver the EPA. And that's from the registered apprenticeship assessment organizations and obviously to agree to a price. As an employer, with regards to managing the endpoint assessment, I believe it would be up to the training provider, the learner, to meet at the initial assessment stage to see how that's gonna be determined. And it will be based on the individual learning needs.

Also, the employer and the training provider will need to determine when the EPA will take place. It states that that can't be any earlier than 12 months and one day but the actual length of training can be anywhere from 15 months, 18 months, 24 months in total. The EPA, I have to say, it's holistic and independent assessment of their knowledge, their skills and behaviors and that's being learnt throughout the apprenticeship standard.

David: Thanks very much, Gail. Let's move to the next question. Can you reset both the components of the EPA or just the test? Sally Garbett.

Sally: Okay. You only have to reset the components but the caveat here is it depends on the standards so please have a look at the specific assessment plan. And I think the person who sent this question was talking about the adult care where there's only two components. In the healthcare, there's three components. And you just reset [inaudible 00:29:24] aspect but the EFFA will only fund a reset where additional learning is required.

David: Okay. Thanks very much. Over to Lucy. So some standards still do not have an EPA center/organizations established. So what are providers supposed to do? Lucy?

Lucy: So this is an interesting one because the endpoint assessment organizations and the training providers are still registering. It's kind of a living process so that happens I think quarterly. So our advice really is that when you're starting your apprentices on a new training program, you want to be sure that they will be able to finish. And, therefore, we're advising people to hold off from starting apprentice until there are registered endpoint assessment organizations available.

David: Thanks very much. So one little question we have, what help is there to support an employer to set up their apprenticeship? So I think Joe, you kindly shared a link that you've been sharing with your contacts. Do you just wanna talk about this? We'll send this link to those people who might be interested and this is the Vimeo video you've got there, Joe.

Joe: Yeah. So this is just a link so just to show you how to set up your data accounts. It really is just a kind of step-by-step guide into paying your providers. It's really good, actually. Like I say, it's step-by-step. It shows you exactly what you need to do. And we send it to a lot of our clients. I've used it and…very successfully.

David: Great. Thank you, Joe. That's Joe at Key Training. So what we were doing now is opening up the questions. We already had a couple of questions come through. So if you do have any questions, please use the chat function, so the chat or the question function, and we'll answer those in turn. But we've just got a couple of questions that we've come through as we were going through which was where can we get a copy of the new apprenticeship standards? So that's the website that we've been speaking out a few times which is...we'll send a link out but it is HASO, H-A-S-O.skillsforhealth.org.uk. And there you can find all the available apprenticeship standards, all the information you need. So that's for that question.

I had a question about smaller training provider. Can't you just apply the full cost of the Quality Mark? The good news is that we are amending Quality Mark. So there'll be various levels available to you, not just individual providers. There will be smaller providers and other things available. So get in touch and we will let you know ASAP about the new... Sorry, I've just got a note from Sally on something. Need to read this. Sally, [inaudible 00:32:06] talk about that a bit. Go ahead, Sally.

Sally: I was just gonna say, the standards are there, obviously, which is great, but please read the assessment plan with the standards because, as a provider, I know you're not necessarily or you're not [inaudible 00:32:18] assessments on the apprentices that you teach but you will need to teach those apprentices how to get through the endpoint assessments. So on the delivery program, as we call it, those involve the learning that the apprentice will need to do in order to enable them to get through that endpoint assessment. So make sure you read that and include that in your on-program learning.

David: Thanks, Sally. Okay. And we've got no more questions at the moment. So if you do have anything, just…we'll stay online for the next few minutes while you can type away. Otherwise, we are mostly...we've got another question coming through. Oh, [inaudible 00:32:57] a question. Thanks very much, guys. So keep the questions coming in and we'll answer them in turn. So here we are. So why are the EPA costs so high for adult care workers and lead adult care workers? How do we justify the costs for employers? I've got Sally shaking her head there. So I think Sally is ready to answer that one.

Sally: It depends on what you call high. I think if you look at the endpoint assessment and you look at what's involved, so you're talking about the social care, the adult care standards. There's only two components there. I think they're between 300 and 550 pounds. They're the same…it's the same cost from a number of EPA organizations for the healthcare. The endpoint assessment for the healthcare, let's talk about that because I know about that one, must be carried out by a currently competent clinical practitioner. So that's somebody that hasn't taught in the area for years and [inaudible 00:33:58] have worked in the area and is also qualified to assess.

So there's that aspect, but it's also a very rigorous process. And, proportionately, [inaudible 00:34:11], the funding that you get for delivering the apprenticeship, it's still, in real terms, increased.

Gail: I think, compared to the current framework, the increase will be a healthcare support worker standard and senior healthcare support worker standard. It's in the region of 1,000 pounds more that you're getting in order to cover that endpoint assessment.

David: Okay. Thanks very much. Whoever asked that question, let us know if that did answer you and if you have got any supplementary questions, let us know. Thanks very much, Sally. Sorry you got the...

Sally: I mean, I was just gonna say you can always shop around. At the moment, to the best of my knowledge of the health standards, there are three, maybe four endpoint assessment organizations. And one of them…we don't favor any, obviously, one of them has where you can work collaboratively with other people. And that may well reduce your cost overall. So do shop around. Talk to the endpoint assessment organizations and get them to explain their models to you. You may be able to play a part in this. Talk to them.

David: Thanks very much, Sally. Another question is can SNE trainers subcontract to a main training provider without being a registered provider? Sally, you look like you wanna answer that one?

Sally: Okay. So if I've interpreted this right, so I think the question is can a small to medium-sized employer who have their own apprentices be permitted to deliver some of the training for those apprentices, having been subcontracted to from their lead provider? I think that's the question I'm answering. So I hope that's the one you asked. The answer is yes. If you are an employer and you are going to be delivering some of the teaching and learning or assessment and you have passed your lead provider's due diligence process, which means your staff are equipped to deliver what they need to do, yes, you can be paid for that from the lead provider. And, indeed, you should.

And that means that you and the provider need to work out what the delivery is for the entire apprenticeship and then work out which proportion of that funding you will receive. And then they will draw up an agreement between you and them. So, yes, you can but you must, must, must meet that due diligence requirement. This is not a free-for-all.

David: Okay. Thanks very much, Sally. Another question is, do main training providers need to tender out all subcontract opportunities? Anyone else, just to give Sally a break?

Lucy: I don't know the answer to that. I don't know if Gail or...

David: Gail, did you have the answer?

Gail: At the moment, we've been discussing quite a lot of this with Richard Dalton because what we were saying is if there are people on the RoATP, we're a bit confused at why we are having to procure again. So at the moment, this was taken up nationally and they are looking at that. Does that answer the question?

Sally: So Gail, similar for us, we're a…St. Christopher's is an employer that will pay the levy and we're on the register that you just referred to, the RoATP. But we are only going to act as a subcontractor because we have a main provider. We work very well with our local college who is our main provider. So they're going to subcontract to us but that's only because we need to deliver elements of our [inaudible 00:37:44] because the provider can't, if you like, chooses not to. And I think main providers can subcontract out but they must be delivering a certain amount themselves, musn't they? There are rules about that.

They can't subcontract [inaudible 00:37:57]. They have to be delivering a proportion of the provision of the apprenticeship subcontracted. Is that right?

Gail: Yes, it is. Yeah, we're also on the RoATP as well when we want to use a trained provider to deliver other aspects for us. And what we've been given advice so far is to use a soft approach procurement. So we haven't got a go for a soft procurement process but I need to liaise with three training providers and do a soft approach with them to show that we've covered that.

Sally: I know, you know, if the employer is the right person to do some of the teaching on-the-job because they're there and [inaudible 00:38:43] the medical equipments or particular approaches to end-of-life care or…then actually the training provider will want to subcontract, if you like, to the employer because [inaudible 00:38:52] much better quality model and we each play to our strength. We need each other, don't we?

Gail: Exactly.

David: Thank you guys. Anyone [inaudible 00:39:00] on that?

Lucy: No.

David: Okay. Thanks. Another question we've had is are there any websites to find out more about the 20% off-the-job training? The funding rules I think is the answer to that.

Sally: Look at the funding rules. It's really clear. If you are a provider listening, you have your version of the funding rules. There are also two other versions. One [inaudible 00:39:28] and one's for employer providers. And all they do is cut down on all the other stuff that isn't necessary but they all contain very clear guidance about what can be included in off-the-job training and can be funded. And there is this statement about off-the-job training that is delivered purely through e-learning or distance learning will not be funded. So it's very, very clear. It's all in there.

David: Thank you. Can a training provider become an EPA endpoint assessor for a different organization? Lucy Blinko?

Lucy: Well, I think the answer...well, at least it's not for health, but I think if it's a higher-education institute, it can. So I think it varies is the answer. So in some instance, you're saying, "No," because they won't be.

Sally: The common endpoint assessment organization, she's getting into nerdy detail, is the quality of the apprenticeship is provided through Ofsted. My understanding, and I'm looking at Lucy here across the table, my understanding is that the organizations that tender for endpoint assessment opportunities have to be awarding organizations.

Lucy: They do.

Sally: In other words, they have to comply with Ofqual, sorry, Ofqual, general conditions of recognition.

Lucy: So that actually ties in with what I just said [inaudible 00:40:54] higher education institutes can do it and other training providers can't.

Sally: However, I think Gail mentioned you went to an event where City & Guild who are approved to endpoint assess the health are currently recruiting endpoint assessors to work for them.

Gail: They are.

Sally: Because they need people who are currently clinically practicing and also qualified to assess and those are likely to come from healthcare employers. So you could work through an [inaudible 00:41:24] organization.

Gail: I expect some [inaudible 00:41:27] organizations will be doing similar, yes.

David: Thanks much.

Gail: I think they are. I think the awarding bodies at the moment are looking to consortiums in care to set up to be EPA due to them having lack of skills within their awarding bodies.

David: Thank you very much guys. Another question. Is it correct that the government has agreed to provide more funding for STEM careers?

Lucy: I don't know the answer. Go, Sally.

Sally: I'm not an expert on this. There's a website at gov.uk. It will tell you what the funding bands, the indicative funding bands are. The STEM is the technical and, you know, other areas. That's not my area of expertise. I would just say go back to the gov.uk website. Have a look at the funding bands. Google it. I bet the answer's out there somewhere.

Lucy: [Inaudible 00:42:23].

David: Next question. Is it correct that you can negotiate the cost of an apprenticeship with a training provider or is it a set cost, i.e. 10%? So…

Sally: Sorry. Okay. The answer to both of those is yes, right? In order to determine what the 10% is, so for non-levy-paying employers...

David: Just reference what you mean by the 10% [inaudible 00:42:49].

Sally: Yes. Well, okay, so non-levy employers only have to pay 10% of the overall cost of the apprenticeship. So that's the 10%. However, the cost of the [inaudible 00:42:59], the funding band, the funding band is the maximum amount the government has agreed to put into that apprenticeship. So a working example, senior healthcare support workers, funding band 3,000 pounds. The cost [inaudible 00:43:16] may be more or less than that. And what the employer has to pay is 10% of the actual cost, not 10% of the funding band.

So what we need to do is go back to the answer we gave at the beginning. You as a provider, sit down with your employer and you work out what the apprenticeship is going to cost. You put in all the elements, the endpoint assessment, the teaching, the assessment, the cost of the qualification, if there is one. You put all that in. You have a clear and meaningful discussion with the employer showing them what the costs are. Once they agree those costs with you, [inaudible 00:43:57] and only when they've agreed to those costs can you file your submission to the skills funding agency and can the money start flowing. So 10% of the actual cost, which isn't necessarily the funding band.

David: Thanks very much. Joe or Gail, do you have any further answers…further response to that?

Joe: I mean… Sorry, Gail.

Gail: No, that's fine. That was totally my understanding. And, yes, it is up for negotiation.

David: Joe, from the training provider side?

Joe: I mean, it depends on the…I mean, for us as a training provider, it depends on the size of the employer. So if there are more than 50 members of staff, then it would then be 10%. And, I mean, it obviously differs for us because we do different qualifications but, yes, agree with Sally. But, again, it would obviously differ on the size of the employer for us.

David: So I suppose that's the difference between your business model and what you might do with the employer versus what maybe the ruling is and what you can do theoretically. Thanks very much for that, Joe.

Joe: Absolutely, yeah.

David: Okay. So another question is healthcare science level 2 is capped at 5,000 pounds. It's clearly a STEM career but I haven't seen an increase in funding.

Lucy: The…when you put in your apprenticeship standards and assessment plan to the government, the skills funding agency allocates the funding band at that point. And so you're effectively given the funding band. There is a possibility to appeal that process, but if anyone wants to appeal, they actually have to provide quite a lot of hard evidence around the cost. And that's not always simple to do. I'm not an expert on what's happening with healthcare science because it's not one of the trailblazers that my team are working with directly so I don't know if they're looking to appeal that or not. So as far as I'm aware, the funding band just stands until an appeal has been successful and it is changed by skilled funding agency.

David: Thanks very much, Lucy. This is probably like one for you again, Lucy. You're getting your money's worth today. One of the slides said that the NHS was targeted to reach 17,000 apprenticeship starts by 2015, '16?

Lucy: Yeah.

David: Do we know how many started?

Lucy: Oh, I don't know that figure off the top of my head. I expect it is somewhere. I don't even know if I'll be able to find that out for you, but I'll have a go and if we can come up with an answer to [inaudible 00:46:39] the webinar, then we'll send the answer out with the slides.

David: Thanks, Lucy.

Gail: I think we might be able to get that answer from Amanda Shobrook [SP] from Health Education England. We were shown the figures at our last meeting but, unfortunately, I can't recall that at the top of my head.

Lucy: Okay. And were they national figures rather than just southwest figures?

Gail: I think we were currently that day looking at southwest figures but whether she has national figures, I'm not sure.

David: Thank you, Gail. We're an SME. Can we seek subcontracting opportunities to deliver the 20% off-the-job training without being [inaudible 00:47:15] of apprenticeship providers' register?

Sally: Yes. Yes, but so, again, I'm assuming that you, as the small, medium-sized employer, have chosen or will choose a lead provider. And I'm assuming that what you're asking is can you deliver the off-the-job training and have the lead provider pay you for that? Yes, you can. And no, you don't have to be on the register unless you're going to earn more than 100,000 pounds in any one year from that training. However, you must pass [inaudible 00:47:48] diligence process because when Ofsted come knocking, they will be responsible for Ofsted and you will be [inaudible 00:47:53] inspection in that if you teach or if you assess, Ofsted may well come and have a look at you, as they did us.

So to maintain the quality, the lead provider will have a due diligence process and will require you to comply with that.

David: Thanks very much, Sally. Anyone else got anything to add on that? Joe or Gail?

Gail: No.

Joe: No.

David: We've gone in the 20% off-the-job training. How can this be recorded? Do you need daily logs with signatures of learning and employer? What exactly will be audited?

Sally: Well, Gail will probably [inaudible 00:48:36] on this one for sure. I don't think we know how they can audit it. I can make a suggestion for the approach that we're taking and then maybe, Gail, it would be really helpful to know what you're doing. You have to work out the delivery model at the beginning of the apprenticeship and you have to cost it because, otherwise, you don't know what the apprenticeship costs and you can't work out the funding allocation between employer and lead provider. In working that out, you're going to work out an indicative delivery model with off-the-job training and where it's going to happen and who's going to do it and how long it will take.

And I've just been through that process with our lead provider, [inaudible 00:49:18] College, for a learning and development apprenticeship. And that is our record. We have there very clearly what days people are going to attend training, the number of days, not the dates, what's going to be taught on those days and who's going to deliver it. And there is our 20%. So I would suggest when you're setting this up, that's when you determine what training happens where and how and that's where you've got your 20%. And then, of course, you'll have evidence that that's happened because people will turn up and do those things.

So there is a [inaudible 00:49:49] portfolio which offers an opportunity for the individual learner to log the time they spend. I'm less excited about that because I think it probably needs to [inaudible 00:50:00] but it would be a useful tool, I'm sure.

David: Thanks very much.

Sally: What do you think, Gail?

Gail: Yeah, the way we were gonna address it as well, again, we'll have our training plan, our lesson plans, our record of our meetings, our one file which logs the contact time, so all of that you would be able to evidence at least the 20%. And it would be auditable, as well. And as a center…

David: [Crosstalk] Carry on, Gail.

Gail: Sorry. As a center, we would always have to have those auditable records anyway.

David: Great. Another point really is, to anyone listening in, if you've got any insights or your own response to these questions, please do email them in to myself. That's david.evans@schoolsforhealth.org.uk. So we're very much interested if you've got any other things to add to these answers. We very much appreciate it. One, I think it's the final question so far. If you do have another question, please do pop it now. We've just got enough time to answer more questions, if you need to so do pop them in the chat window.

Would a subcontracting training provider be required to have certain qualifications, e.g. adult teaching, or is valid experience or relevant training delivery experience sufficient?

Sally: Right. We're looking at each other in the room. So we'll talk to Gail as well but if the person delivering the training is going to be assessing part of a qualification, the awarding organization for that qualification may have rules about what qualifications they have. However, for teaching, it will be up to the due diligence process that the lead provider has in place. So, for example, where we're delivering experiential learning or specialist learning about end-of-life care from a hospice, our staff happens to be nurses and teachers but the on-the-job modeling of practice and teaching, they may not be qualified teachers but our lead provider accepts that because they have seen that they can teach.

So it's down to due diligence. Gail, what do you think?

Gail: Exactly what you've said really. As long as they're clinically competent and they're current and they're teaching that within the working environment, they do not need to hold a teaching qualification. But, again, if they were to be assessing, then that's different. They would need to have a qualification.

Sally: And just to come in on the back of that with assessing, the assessment qualification, as providers you'll be familiar with, will obviously be the QCF qualifications or their predecessors. But, actually, for the health qualification just appear within some of the standards. Also, the nursing assessment qualifications and PGCs and [inaudible 00:53:05] are also permissible so do have a look back at the [inaudible 00:53:10].

Gail: And mentorship model.

Sally: And mentorship, the 998 which is getting to know the [inaudible 00:53:14] but those clinical assessment qualifications are permissible as assessment qualifications.

David: Okay. Thanks very much, Sally. How is off-the-job…GLH?

Sally: Guided learning hours.

David: Right. Thank you. How is off-the-job guided learning hours recorded for learners who do not attend a center, e.g. work-based learning?

Gail: Have you already answered that [inaudible 00:53:47]?

Sally: Well, so far, if they don't attend a center….so, okay, so off-the-job…Gail and I, I suspect, off-the-job training, if you have a look at the funding rules, it's classified as trained but is not while somebody is working but can be in their place of work. You'll have that planned in your delivery plan from the start. So you will say what's going to happen and where it's going to happen. You need to have that in order to cost the apprenticeship in order to get the agreement signed and get it all started. So you should have that.

So where somebody doesn't come to a central point, because the training is happening in their work place, you will still have that logged on the delivery schedule and how that's going to happen. Just as a caveat here, you know, a health warning, assessment, the visiting assessor, assessing the progress of someone is not necessarily delivering learning. If they're assessing the outcome and whether people meet the standards, that isn't delivering learning necessarily. It might be reviewing progress and assessing them against components of the standard or a qualification but that's assessment, not learning.

Gail: I agree.

Sally: Gail?

Gail: Yeah, I totally agree.

David: Okay. Thank you. Does the 20% off-the-job learning apply to learners who started pre-1st…May the 1st?

Gail: Doesn't it depend on...

Sally: It will depend on the standard, won't it?

Gail: The standard [inaudible 00:55:23].

Sally: Yes, so if they're on the old framework, then that didn't apply then. So going forward, if it's on the standard, then it will be applying. That's my understanding.

Gail: Joe? I'm just interested to know, going forward, we can see that we will have learners who are doing frameworks [inaudible 00:55:46] learning classroom or environment as learners who are on standard, who won't be able to...you know, there will be an overlap. Would you…can you see that happening with your organization where it's, you know… [inaudible 00:55:59] can take advantage of the additional learning?

Joe: Potentially. I mean, we are currently delivering frameworks and standards so we're gonna have... I mean, the standard we're gonna be offering will be customer service and the framework will be business administration. So there will be a lap-over. Anything from the 1st of May in terms of customer service will be a standard. So it depends on the way we're setting ourselves up and it depends how many individuals we have in a certain workplace. So if we have, say, if it was just one person doing all of our qualifications in the workplace, then we perhaps wouldn't do classroom learning but we'd deliver all that at the workplace whereas if it was a larger organization and they had several people, then that is something that we could look at.

So, for us, it depends on the employer and the number of candidates that we've got employed there.

David: Okay. Thanks very much. I think we're out of time now. So it just reminds me…remains for me to say thank you very much to Lucy Blinko, Skills for Health, to Sally Garbett, St. Christopher's Hospice, to Gail Richards, North Devon Healthcare Trust, and Joseph Sutton, Key Training. Thank you very much for everyone who attended [inaudible 00:57:09] helping me with the questions. We will be sending out a recording of this webinar and typing up some responses to the questions that we've had so you've got some further information. So it just remains for me to say thanks very much.

And I'll send out the link but if you do need, it…the place to go [inaudible 00:57:31].org.uk for information about the standards. So thank you very much everyone.

Sally: Thank you.

Joe: Thank you.

Gail: Thank you.