• Public consultations on changes to funding and a simplified external quality assurance (EQA) system for apprenticeships will close on 18 and 21 May respectively.
  • We will use feedback from the funding consultation to develop a more refined model, which will be subject to a second consultation.

The countdown to the closing dates for two major consultations launched by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education has begun.

The Institute understands that in the current climate many organisations are having to make difficult decisions about their businesses. That is why we previously extended both of our consultations for a further 6 weeks from mid-April on how future funding recommendations will be made and for a simplified EQA system, to give people more time to respond.

With the new closing dates now approaching, our chief executive Jennifer Coupland wants to encourage as many people as possible to take the opportunity to respond.

She said: “We’ve had hundreds of responses to the consultations so far, but wanted to highlight that the extended closing dates are fast approaching and encourage any organisations with an interest who’ve not yet responded to do so.
“We do appreciate the additional challenge due to the impact of Covid-19 and we are working hard to support everyone in the sector.”

The Institute would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to respond so far.

We are planning to incorporate feedback from the consultation on our funding model proposals into a more refined model. A second consultation will be launched on this.

The Institute would welcome further consultation engagement on our proposal for a simplified system where EQA is delivered by Ofqual or, for integrated degree apprenticeships, the Office for Students (OfS). We will use this to in inform and refine our thinking. 

Jennifer said: “It will be important that we give proper consideration to all the responses for both the funding and EQA consultations once they close and we will give a more detailed update on the next steps once we have had an opportunity to do that.”

 

BACKGROUND:

Funding:

The Institute has taken on board feedback from employers, who develop new apprenticeships with our support, that the existing system is not transparent enough and needs to be reformed.

We commissioned a report by IFF Research into the actual costs of delivering apprenticeships. We used this research to develop a more transparent model, drawing on average delivery costs, which is now being consulted on. Feedback from this consultation will be used to develop a new more defined model, which will be subject to a second consultation.

 

EQA:

Under the proposed simplified new model, the Institute would retain our strategic role in EQA oversight, through our EQA framework.  Ofqual and OfS would draw on the expertise of professional or employer-led bodies, for standards where an appropriate body exists, to make sure that end-point assessment remains a reliable and relevant test of occupational competence that meets the needs of employers. 

 

Covid 19:

If you have any questions on Covid-19 and the Institute’s response please refer to our website or contact us via Enquiries.IFA@education.gov.uk.