Apprentice Levy and Enterprise Bill - April 2017

To be completed by:

Time: - | Venue:

Important Information - Apprentice Levy Briefing Notice - What it means for schools Information for maintained schools - where Bradford Council is the employer only

1. Purpose

To brief Schools on the implementation of Central Government Reforms on Apprenticeships set out in the Apprenticeship Levy and Enterprise Act 2016.

2. Background

Central Government Apprenticeship Reforms

There are significant changes to the way that Apprenticeships are to be funded and a requirement for larger public sector organisations to employ a proportion of their workers as apprentices.  These changes will have a substantial impact on the Council, Schools and other larger public sector organisations in Bradford.  In summary the changes are:

Apprenticeship Levy - Bradford Council and other businesses with a salary budget greater than £3m per annum will be required to pay 0.5% of this budget (including the Schools Pay Bill)  via PAYE, into a ‘digital account’ to fund apprenticeship training.  This money can only be used to pay for apprenticeship training and assessment against an approved apprenticeship framework or standard.  This can be both for existing employees as well as new starters.   In the first year this money must be managed directly by Bradford Council.  In the second and subsequent years the Council may consider delegating some of this responsibility to other organisations within its partnership – further information will become available next year.

Enterprise Act 2016 - Bradford Council and other public sector organisations employing more than 250 employees (including school based employees) will be required to employ 2.3% of their workforce as apprentices. These apprenticeships can be at any age and level and in the first year it is also possible to fund existing staff training.

These changes come into force April 2017.

3. Key facts

The Council will have to pay 0.5% of its total pay bill into the Digital Apprentice Service Account and increase the number of apprentices that it employs.  The Council will be responsible for paying training providers through the Digital Account.

This scheme includes all Bradford Community and Voluntary Controlled Schools.

What this means:

  • The Council will pay approximately £1.8 m into the levy account per year
  • All apprentice training will be funded from the Apprentice Levy from May 2017
  • Community and Voluntary Controlled schools will be able to access apprenticeship training through the Council’s Learning and Development Academy
  • Schools cannot be deemed as separate entities and accounted for individually
  • Existing staff members can access apprenticeship training in the first year
  • The Digital Apprentice Service account will only pay for training and examination fees
  • The salary costs for apprentices working in schools has to be funded from the school’s salary budget, currently the standard Apprenticeship hourly rate is £ 3.50 per hour.


  • Apprenticeship training will be provided at no cost to schools  
  • Appointing an apprentice does not guaranteed them a job at the end of the apprenticeship
  • Training providers will be paid directly from the Digital Account
  • Existing staff can be up-skilled through the apprenticeship programme, providing that the qualification meet Apprentice Levy requirements.
  • Training providers will be procured to deliver recognised qualifications that will meet the requirements of the Apprenticeship Levy, so schools will not need to provide this individually.


4. Financial information

Each school will pay 0.5% of their pay bill from its individual delegated budget. We anticipate that this will be on a pro-rata monthly cost of salaries basis. Further information will be provided in due course. The levy will form part of a school’s monthly salaries cost, which, for schools that use Bradford MDC payroll, will be charged by journal to the school’s ledger cost centre (in the case of part budget share schools) or by invoice (in the case of full budget share schools).  For schools who purchase payroll provision from providers other than the Council, this will be recovered in the same way as other payments for which the Council is responsible for making, e.g. Teachers Pension Payments.

Individual schools or groups of schools may wish to consider appointing apprentices in to their current staffing structures, to meet current and future workforce planning requirements.

The appointment of an apprentice will be managed directly by the school or group of schools, however, discussions on training provision will need to be undertaken with the Council’s Learning and Development Academy.

As the role out of the new apprenticeship model and the Digital Apprenticeship Service continues to evolve during the period up to April 2017, the Council will continue to communicate with Community and Voluntary Controlled Schools on a regular basis to keep them up to date on the current situation.


5. Voluntary Aided, Foundation Schools and Academies

In these schools (as in academies) the governing body is considered to be the employer, rather than the LA. Therefore each VA/foundation school’s liability for the levy will be based on its own pay bill.

For further information:

Please see attached document (Apprenticeship Levy and Public Sector Duty – Briefing for Schools and Education Stakeholders) which is a briefing for schools and stakeholders from the Department of Education.

    As the role out of the new apprenticeship model and the Digital Apprenticeship Service continues to evolve during the     period up to April 2017, the Council will continue to communicate with Community and Voluntary Controlled Schools on     a regular basis to keep them up to date on the current situation.

Contact Details

Tina Lafferty

Head of Organisation and Workforce Development

01274 437227


Elaine Mallinson

Apprenticeship Placements Partner

01274 434450



Published: 17/01/2017
Audience: Head Teachers of Local Authority Maintained Schools - where Bradford Council is the Employer
Contact: Tina Lafferty

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