Weekly News Update -Apprenticeship support expansion, Training Group Survey & more

I hope you’re having a good week as we enter December – and the start of the build-up to Christmas. Today’s email includes good news about the expansion of CITB’s apprenticeship support; details of our Training Group Survey and a vacancy on the Levy Strategy Committee; plus the latest information about test centre availability.

Apprenticeship support expanded to all levy-registered construction employers

 2020 has been an incredibly difficult year for everyone, and not least those in the construction industry, so CITB is changing its apprenticeship support to enable all levy-registered construction employers to benefit from an expanded support service.

Currently, CITB offers employer and apprentice support for its 7,000 contracted apprenticeships, about a third of the total number across the industry. Under the new plans, throughout 2021, CITB will withdraw from the direct, funded delivery of apprenticeships in England, and instead provide a support service to all employers with construction apprentices. Funded apprenticeship support will continue in Scotland and Wales, and the wider offer will also apply in those nations.

Support for employers will include help accessing grants; choosing the right apprenticeship standard and the right training provider; guidance through the Government’s online apprenticeships system; and building partnerships with colleges and training providers. We will continue to offer recruitment support to employers who recruit large numbers of apprentices each year. More details will be made available soon.

 Support for employers: participate in our survey before 15 January

CITB is continuing to look at how we best support industry with an expected income reduction of 30% over the next four years, and we would like to get the views of all our employers on these decisions.

For several years CITB has funded a network of Training Groups (TGs). These groups help their members – local employers, and mainly micro and small companies – to join up and use their collective buying power to arrange discounted local training for their workforce.

At a time when many other programmes have been paused, CITB has maintained its support for TGs,  at a reduced level. This reflects our belief that it is important to support employers locally with accessing the training they need.

We are currently looking at the best ways to help employers access training at a local level and have developed an options paper on potential funding models which can be accessed here. We want to get your views as an employer, whether you are a TG member or not. You can find a link to the survey on the same page, and details of how to submit  alternative suggestions if preferable. Your local Partnership Team colleague will be happy to discuss the options with you, if you’d like more information. This consultation will close on 15 January.

Levy Strategy Committee vacancy – Independent member for England

CITB has set up a Levy Strategy Committee to help assess the impact of future Levy Proposals and ensure fair and sustainable outcomes for all CITB registered employers. We are seeking an independent expert with an understanding of the construction sector. The successful candidate will discuss key industry trends, evaluate ideas and test the Committee’s thinking with their network.

More information about the vacancy is available here and the expression of interest form and other information can be found here. Completed expressions of interest should be emailed to corporate.governance@citb.co.uk by 5pm on Wednesday 9 December. Interviews will take place in early January 2021.

 Test centre availability

Pearson Vue test centres remain open with testing continuing in all three nations. ITCs (Internet Test Centres) need to refer to Government guidance and the decision to continue testing will lie with each individual centre. For more information check here.

 A reminder… 

We will now be offering individual conversations virtually for any employers who would like a meeting with their local CITB Advisor. Bookings can be made through our Local Events page. Our group sessions will also continue, following their initial success.

CITB’s COVID-19 Urgent Messages page is refreshed regularly and includes updates on the full range of our work. You can also read the range of support measures made available to UK businesses and employees by the UK Government.

Best wishes and stay safe everyone,

Sarah Beale

Chief Executive