June 2023 - UpdateThe exceptional funding band review process has now been completed. Exceptional funding band review outcomes can be viewed by searching for the relevant standard via the IfATE’s apprenticeship search function.



Exceptional funding band reviews

A set of exceptional funding band reviews are being launched today, which will provide an accelerated path to changes for apprenticeship funding, helping to tackle rising costs.

These reviews are targeted at 20 high-volume apprenticeships in skills shortage occupations and priority sectors and will conclude by April 2023. The 20 apprenticeships have been chosen by the DfE, following consultation with provider representative bodies, and taking account of available evidence on the impact of cost inflation on apprenticeships delivery.

Ordinarily, most funding band reviews happen as part of revisions to apprenticeship content, which can be a lengthy process.

However, due to the challenge facing apprentices and providers in the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education will be running a temporary ‘exceptional funding review’ system.

The major difference will be that a full apprenticeship content review will not be required, so funding decisions can be made much more quickly. 

IfATE funding band reviews identify our best estimate of the typical cost of training and assessment. This can mean the funding band can go up, stay the same, or go down. It is envisaged that any funding band increases made by this exceptional funding band review process will be limited to an increase of one funding band only.  

It is crucial that IfATE is able to conduct both these exceptional funding reviews, and the full funding reviews, properly. Taxpayers rightly expect IfATE to carefully scrutinise all requests to make sure that affordability and value for money is protected. Any changes to funding bands for these 20 standards will be subject to affordability.

By limiting to 20 priority apprenticeships, we are going to be able to make funding recommendations more quickly and protect provision for key standards.

Those apprenticeships which have not been selected will be able to apply for a funding band review as normal. It is important to note that not all requests are accepted, nor do all accepted requests lead to changes in funding, and IfATE carefully considers the evidence in each case. 

Jennifer Coupland, IfATE chief executive, said: We understand the impact of rising costs and we have listened to employers and training providers who have clearly set out the difficulties being faced.

We have had to target support at these 20 priority apprenticeships, to ensure affordability and a rapid turnaround on funding decisions.


Minister for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education Robert Halfon said: Enabling more employers to deliver apprenticeships is key to giving people from all backgrounds, up and down the country, the chance to develop their skills and climb the ladder of opportunity.

That’s why we’re taking action to help employers and apprenticeship providers tackle rising costs by launching funding reviews for 20 apprenticeships in sectors with skills shortages, including engineering and adult social care.

This will support more businesses to take on apprentices, boost skills in key sectors, and drive economic growth.



  • Adult care worker
  • Lead adult care worker
  • Chef De Partie
  • Commis Chef
  • Senior Production Chef
  • Production Chef
  • Gas Engineering Operative
  • Painter and Decorator
  • Advanced Carpentry and Joinery
  • Carpentry and joinery
  • Groundworker
  • Maritime Mechanical and Electrical Mechanic
  • Maintenance and Operations Engineering Technician
  • Heavy Vehicle Service and Maintenance Technician
  • Engineering Fitter
  • Engineering operative
  • Motor vehicle service and maintenance technician (light vehicle)
  • Engineering technician
  • Autocare Technician
  • Large Goods Vehicle (LGV) Driver C and E