Are you a Headteacher, Nursery Leader or colleague responsible for CPD in your school, trust or local authority? Read on to find out how apprenticeships can benefit your staff.


Your next great employee is at your fingertips

An apprenticeship with United Learning is more than you might think. Apprenticeships are professional qualifications for professional teams. They give your support staff the chance to unlock their potential by supercharging their skills, and in turn, supercharge your workforce.

Your staff are integral to the effective running of your school, so it is crucial that you make their development a priority. Giving your staff access to quality training opportunities will open doors for their career progression, as well as help to support your recruitment – retain your staff and grow your workforce.

Quality assured

We’re passionate about great education. That is why we ensure that our curriculum content is quality assured by experienced educators across United Learning and is fit-for-purpose.

We regularly gather feedback through surveys, observations, sample assignments and assessments, and we use this to inform our quality assurance process. This ensures that we have the feedback and evidence we need to deliver a high impact, quality learning experience.

Save on training and salary costs for 20% of staff time

Developing staff is expensive – but with apprenticeships we don’t just cover the cost of training – you can save on salary costs too by hiring an apprentice.

For an apprentice to complete their programme, they must complete 6.5 hours per week ‘off the job’ study time. This means that all employees working 30+ hours per week must complete this entitlement for the duration of the 18-month programme, during their normal working hours.

If they work less than 30 hours per week, they will spend 20% of their weekly hours on off the job study and their programme would be extended. The number of hours for your apprentice will be agreed in their Training Plan before their start date.

How does it work?

Any employee working over 30 hours a week for you must spend a minimum of 6.5 hours on their apprenticeship learning each week, to be scheduled in their working hours. This could, for example, be one day from home a week, in school or split across mornings and afternoons. The apprentice should arrange with their line manager/head of department when they intend to carry out this time and we can support with creating a plan that works for everyone.

  • The apprentice should be given flexibility to self-guide their learning alongside partially arranged set working times for face-to-face and online work. To help you plan, we will let you know of any fixed teaching days before your apprentice starts their programme. We understand the working patterns of school-based apprentices, so all live sessions will take place during the school day when they will already be at work, and nothing is planned to be completed outside of school hours.
  • Apprentices must evidence their hours of learning away from their day-to-day responsibilities for the duration of the practical period of their programme. Some of this will be at fixed times, during the school working day, for each programme. For example: during the Teaching Assistant programme all live sessions take place online from 9-11am on a Wednesday, approximately every six weeks. This would result in a minimum of three hours needing to be allocated between 8.30-9 – 11.30-12 every Wednesday, with the remaining 3.5 hours of Off the Job time arranged to suit the school.

We are experts in helping schools make apprenticeships work for schools, and we are with you every step of the way. Goodbye knowledge gaps, hello employee development!

Reduce cost, not staffing

We meant it when we said you can cut costs whilst developing your staff.

For staff working in a United Learning school, the programmes are fully funded by United Learning’s contribution to the government’s apprenticeship levy. This means that the training cost is completely free to apprentices and their schools. Training refers to the curriculum and delivery of the programme and of the end point assessment. This is also the case for external levy paying employers.

If you don’t pay the apprenticeship levy as an employer, you can still benefit. You’ll need to pay 5% towards the cost of each apprenticeship, and your payments will be made in monthly instalments to help you manage your budget efficiently.

Current funding through the apprenticeship levy

Teaching Assistant - £7000 max. funding 

Early Years Educator - £7000 max. funding

HR Support - £4500 max. funding

You either save 100% on staff training costs as a levy payer or save 95% on training costs as a non-levy payer. For staff that you put forward for an apprenticeship, whether as new recruits or existing staff, their salary and employment costs remain your responsibility as their employer.

We provide them with the training package: input – assessment = qualification, for free or 95% funded.

For example: the maximum cost of training for a Teaching Assistant is £5000. A levy payer/small employer would pay £0, and a non-levy payer would pay £250, meaning a saving of £4750 from your school budget.

Supporting development

We know learning is more effective when it happens as part of a learning community. Having access to a supportive network will motivate and inspire your staff as they work towards their qualification. This is why we make sure our apprentices can access all the support they need from us throughout the programme.

All apprentices will:

  • Be allocated a buddy on the programme
  • Have regular 1:1s with their programme lead
  • Be allocated a workplace mentor who is an expert in their field
  • Have access to an online forum for their cohort
  • Have a dedicated mailbox to our provider management team
  • Have regular opportunities to share their feedback on their programme
  • Have reasonable adjustments in place if required

As the employer you will:

  • Receive regular briefings via email and updates
  • Have easy access to induction and training for your apprentice’s workplace mentor, and attend regular review meetings with them, the programme lead, and the apprentice,Have access to the apprentice’s online portfolio so you can monitor and review their learning
  • Have direct email access to our provider management team, whenever you need it.

We’ve also made sure the curriculum is written and ready to be delivered. This means that you can focus on supporting your apprentice to apply their new knowledge and skills instead of spending precious time planning and writing tasks yourself.

We know what school life is like, so we aim to be as flexible as possible and be there to support you and the apprentice whenever you need it.

United Learning comprises: United Learning Ltd (Registered in England No: 00018582. Charity No. 313999) UCST (Registered in England No: 2780748. Charity No. 1016538) and ULT (Registered in England No. 4439859. An Exempt Charity). Companies limited by guarantee.
Registered address: United Learning, Worldwide House, Thorpe Wood, Peterborough, PE3 6SB.

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