We review apprenticeship standards approved for delivery at regular intervals. This is to decide if they need to be revised or withdrawn. Route reviews look at apprenticeship standards both individually and in relation to other apprenticeship standards.
We only want to make changes to apprenticeship standards where it is right to do so. This will ensure stability for employers, training providers, end-point assessment organisations (EPAO), and apprentices. We also want to avoid unnecessary work for trailblazer groups.
In some circumstances, we may support trailblazer groups to make changes to an apprenticeship standard ahead of a route review.
A request to change an apprenticeship standard may relate to one or more of the following parts:
A change request may come from several sources, including:
To make a change request you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
You need to:
We will consider every change request we receive.
We will decide whether to support a change request or not. We aim to do this within four weeks. If this is not possible, we will let you know.
Where a change request is not from the apprenticeship standard’s trailblazer group, we will tell them. We will also seek their views to inform our decision.
When we consider a change request for any part(s) of an apprenticeship standard, we will also consider if other parts need to change. For example, if we receive a change request relating to an EPA plan we will also consider if the occupational standard or funding band may need to change.
Our decision may be to:
A revision is a change to an apprenticeship standard which
We will only support a trailblazer group to complete a revision which is consistent with our approval requirements (occupation, occupational standard and EPA) and where a revised apprenticeship standard will better meet the needs of apprentices, employers, the professions and/or the economy.
Reasons why we may support a revision:
We do not usually expect recently approved apprenticeship standards to need revisions.
A new occupation proposal may need to be submitted and agreed before we can agree to support the work for a revision of an occupational standard. This is where there is a concern about an occupation meeting our requirements for an apprenticeship standard.
You will need to submit an occupation proposal to add an additional option (occupation) to an existing core and options apprenticeship standard or to add an occupation to create a core and options.
A revision to an occupational standard and/or EPA plan may need us to review the funding band.
When looking at a funding band only change request, we will consider if the occupational standard and/or EPA plan needs to change.
For funding band only change requests, the apprenticeship standard must have been ‘approved for delivery’ for at least 12 months (with or without starts in that period) before we will consider a change request.
We will look at evidence to decide if our criteria to support a revision have been met.
This may include:
An adjustment is a minor change, clarification or correction to an occupational standard or EPA plan that does not meet the definition of a revision.
An adjustment will not go through the approvals process.
It does not change the apprenticeship standard version number.
Exceptionally, the Institute may authorise a dispensation to an approved apprenticeship standard to protect the interests of apprentices.
It permits employers, training providers and/or EPAOs to deliver the occupational standard and/or EPA plan within amended constraints, usually with a set expiry date.
Where the Institute authorises a dispensation, it normally comes with the requirement to revise the occupational standard and/or EPA plan to address the issue that prompted the need for the dispensation.
We will tell the person who made the request whether we support the change or not. We will also tell the apprenticeship standard’s trailblazer group. We will provide the reason for our decision and evidence considered.
The relevant route panel will be advised of decisions to support a revision or dispensation. The route panel may provide advice to the trailblazer group to inform a revision.
A revision must be prepared by a trailblazer group, which has been approved by the Institute.
An RM leads our support to the trailblazer group. The trailblazer group is responsible for preparing the revised apprenticeship standard which reflects the changes needed. Further changes needed may be identified during the development process.
The RM will agree an apprenticeship development work plan with the trailblazer group.
If the original trailblazer group cannot support the work, we may commission a new trailblazer group to take the work forward.
Where an occupational standard is revised, we will review its placement on the occupational map.
For approved occupational standard and EPA revisions, the revised version will be available after an agreed transition plan.
Approved revisions have a new apprenticeship standard version number.
A revision may take an apprenticeship standard out of scope for a later route review.
We will action an adjustment. The relationship manager will advise and/or seek input from the trailblazer group as required. The RM will tell the trailblazer group when the adjustment has been published.
We will action an EPA dispensation. The relationship manager will advise and/or seek input from the trailblazer group as required. The RM will tell the trailblazer group when the dispensation has been actioned.
The Institute identifies two types of revision. This is based on how the revision is implemented by the ESFA, not the size of the changes.
The two numbers are defined as:
If you are unhappy with any final decision made by the Institute in connection with a revision or adjustment, you may be able to challenge the Institute’s decision by way of procedural review. Time frames for submitting a procedural review and details of the ground which must be met for a procedural review to be granted can be found in our guidance.