local government

Delivering Apprenticeships Across the Public Sector

local government

08:45 - 16:40

Tuesday 4 June 2019

etc. Venues Manchester, Central Manchester

This Forum provides participants with an excellent opportunity to examine successful apprenticeship delivery methods across the public sector. Attendees will be updated on the transition between the apprenticeship framework and the Institute for Apprenticeship’s new standards, as well as how to obtain the government’s £3.2 billion worth of funding to support the sector in meeting the 2.3% apprenticeship target. In addition, award winning organisations will share guidance around how to deliver high-quality apprenticeship schemes through establishing robust local partnerships, collaborating with key stakeholders, and tailoring programmes to meet employer needs.


This Forum is designed for the wider Public Sector. Typical job titles will include:

  • Heads of Human Resources
  • Apprenticeship and Training Managers
  • Heads of Recruitment
  • Personnel Officers
  • Heads of Learning and Organisational Development
  • Heads of Organisation Transformation
  • Higher Education Policy Advisers
  • Learning and Development Leads
  • Economic Development Managers
  • Workforce Programmes Operational Managers
  • Careers and Apprenticeship Managers
  • Project Managers

This Forum is also open to Fire and Rescue Services, Higher Education, Policing, Health, Private and Voluntary sectors to encourage debate and networking

Key Speakers Confirmed:
  • Daniel Simmons, Learning Policy Manager, Apprenticeships, Education and Skills Funding Agency 
  • Paul Warner, Director of Research & Development, Association of Employment and Learning Providers 
  • Jill Nicholls, Senior Relationship Manager, Institute for Apprenticeships
  • Claire Paul, Director, Leadership Development & New Talent, BBC Academy
  • Councillor Sean Fielding, Lead for Education, Skills and Apprenticeships, Greater Manchester Combined Authority 
  • Emily Childerstone, Project Choice Apprenticeship/Transition Lead, Health Education England (HEE)
  • Lucy Ottewell-Key, Executive Director of Workforce Skills and Partnerships, Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education
  • Roland Bryant, Apprenticeship Lead, Portsmouth City Council
View the agenda and additional speakers


Nearly two years on since the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy, the public sector is still struggling to meet the 200,000 new apprentice starters it was targeted to deliver by 2020. In the year leading up to November 2018, there were 45,314 new apprenticeship starts across the whole of the public sector, which constitutes 1.4% out of a total workforce of 3.2 million at the start of the year. Clearly, this demonstrates that the public sector still has some way to go towards meeting its target by the 2020 deadline.

Moreover, the public sector is expected to play a major role in assisting apprenticeship growth across the UK more generally, to assist in reaching the target of 3 million apprentice starts by 2020. To help meet this target and deliver the required number of apprenticeships, the government introduced the Apprenticeship Levy in April 2017 to help fund them. Upon its introduction, the Levy was expected to allow employers to address skills gaps, improve retention, reduce spend on agency support, and create embedded progression paths for the existing workforce. Furthermore, with 92% of apprenticeship employers nationally asserting that apprenticeships lead to a more motivated and satisfied workforce, the benefits for both employers and apprentices are evident. 

However, since the levy was introduced apprenticeship starts have fallen, with numbers down nearly a quarter in 2017/18 compared with the year before. The Apprenticeship Levy and 2.3% recruitment target has drastically changed the public sector apprenticeship landscape. Failure to successfully deliver first-class apprenticeship programmes could see the public sector lose high-quality young candidates and limit the potential of the entire sector. 

The onus is now on public sector institutions to work constructively with training providers, employers and the wider community to create apprenticeship opportunities and promote the valuable and viable careers that the sector can offer young people across the UK.

Lucy Ottewell-Key, Executive Director of Workforce Skills and Partnerships, Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education

With over 14 years’ experience across independent and FE provision, Lucy has experience in developing robust business development strategies. Having managed teams at both national and local level, she is focused on meeting the needs of employers. She has led the apprenticeship reform strategy on behalf of Grimsby Institute; this has included all processes and procedures, employer engagement, learner engagement, audit readiness, curriculum planning and development, financial planning, promotion, marketing and staff development. Lucy was the Apprenticeship lead for the Institutes 2017 Ofsted inspection and is currently supporting the FE sector through various Strategic College Investment Fund projects.

Emily Childerstone, Project Choice Apprenticeship/Transition Lead, Health Education England (HEE)

As a qualified teacher, experienced assessor and apprentice co-ordinator, Emily has a unique understanding of the challenges faced by young people on their journey to be accepted into the workplace. Emily has worked in the NHS for almost 10 years working diligently to progress to a management position. Working in a number of business units has enabled Emily to gain a fundamental understanding and appreciation of the requirements of an employer.

Emily is passionate about getting young people into Apprenticeships and Work and using this skillset has successfully supported individuals into achieving their goals and ensuring any tangible adjustments are made in the workplace.


Registration, Refreshments and Networking


Chair's Welcome Address

Ann-Marie Bathmaker, Professor of Vocational Education, University of Birmingham (invited) 


Morning Keynote: Driving Forward the Public Sector Apprenticeship Agenda

  • Sharing guidance around effective and efficient use of the apprenticeship levy by public sector employers to help meet the 2.3% target
  • Exploring the impact of changes to apprenticeship funding since August 2018, where the number of funding bands was extended from 15 to 30
  • Detailing the additional funding available for providers training 16-18 year olds, apprentices who require learning support, and care leavers aged 16-24
  • Providing guidance around the submission of public sector apprenticeship target reports, in advance of the reporting deadline in September 2019
  • Explaining the utility of the ESFA’s online apprenticeship service, which was recognised as ‘digital public service innovation of the year’ at the Digital Leaders Awards 2018 and used by over 13,000 employers

Daniel Simmons, Learning Policy Manager, Apprenticeships, Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Supporting Providers to Deliver High-Quality Apprenticeship Programmes in the Public Sector

  • Providing a raft of best-practice resources to apprenticeship trainers and providers around topics such as reasonable adjustments, pricing and eligible costs, and off-the-job training
  • Sharing results from the AELP 2018 Member Survey relating to opinions on the levy, and discussing ways to improve the current allocation system
  • Understanding the importance of employers selecting the correct end point assessment organisation for their apprentices
  • Consulting key stakeholders on plans for the development of new apprenticeship standards, such as the proposed Business Administration standard, and supporting their journey towards submission

Paul Warner, Director of Research & Development, Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Workshop: Successfully Negotiating with Employers to Secure Apprenticeship Delivery Partnerships

An interactive session where delegates will learn effective negotiation strategies and tactics to secure apprenticeship delivery partnerships with employers

  • Outlining how to clearly evidence negotiations with employers to ensure compliance with requirements from ESFA and Ofsted and secure funding 
  • Providing guidance around robust communication strategies and talking points to effectively “sell” your training provision to employers 
  • Detailing the critical areas of research and preparation providers must complete prior to entering negotiations with employers 
  • Understanding how to make a persuasive and comprehensive business case to maximise the chances of successful FE-employer partnerships 
  • Highlighting apprenticeship negotiations as a two-stage process; firstly, demonstrating the quality and relevance of the training provision, and secondly, the suitability of the candidate

The Grimsby Institute is rated “Outstanding” by Ofsted 

Lucy Ottewell-Key, Executive Director of Workforce Skills and Partnerships, Grimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education (CONFIRMED) 


Case Study: Effectively Coordinating Apprenticeship Delivery Through a Regional Jobs Hub

  • Exploring how the Greater Manchester Apprenticeship Hub is able to support the apprenticeship agenda by pooling expertise and resources from a wide variety of partners across the city region
  • Providing a forum for collaboration between organisations with an interest in supporting apprenticeships
  • Offering grant funding for a range of projects that support the delivery of high-quality apprenticeships, such as the Apprenticeship Ambassadors scheme, placing real apprentices into schools and colleges to advocate for apprenticeships as a route into a successful career
  • Outlining progress made on the delivery of a £6 million City Deal to revitalise local industries and drive growth through apprenticeships
  • Maximising employer take up of apprenticeships in key sectors by improving information sharing, providing advice and guidance services for young people, and developing the capacity of providers to ensure supply matches demand

Councillor Sean Fielding, Lead for Education, Skills and Apprenticeships, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Lunch and Networking


Afternoon Keynote: Leading and Supporting Development of Rigorous Apprenticeship Standards

  • Sharing progress around the ongoing transition away from Apprenticeship Frameworks and towards the more rigorous Apprenticeships Standards; examining the impact on both providers and employers
  • Providing guidance on successfully completing an end-point assessment plan, apprenticeship occupation proposal and forming a trailblazer group, in order to develop a new apprenticeship standard
  • Suggesting effective methods for promoting newly-approved apprenticeship standards to other key stakeholders, such as training providers, end-point assessment organisations and other employers
  • Outlining the four ways in which a trailblazer group can choose to deliver External Quality Assurance (EQA) for a standard, and advising on which models are most appropriate for particular contexts or occupations

Jill Nicholls, Senior Relationship Manager, Institute for Apprenticeships (CONFIRMED)


Special Keynote: Providing Apprenticeship Opportunities for Graduates and Non-Graduates

  • Examining the process and procedures put in place to combine comprehensive recruitment with talent development, ensuring apprentices have a clear career pathway
  • Outlining the lessons learnt when rolling out a large scale recruitment scheme which sees the BBC offer over 200 apprenticeship/trainee opportunities for young people
  • Examining the different methods implemented when attracting graduate and non-graduate talent into the public sector
  • Highlighting how the BBC ensures it is offering new opportunities in emerging areas, such as Cyber Security and Research & Development, to ensure they continue to attract high-quality candidates

Claire Paul, Director, Leadership Development & New Talent, BBC Academy (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Effectively Delivering Apprenticeships and Exceeding the 2.3% Target in Local Government

  • Exceeding the Government’s public sector apprenticeship target of 2.3% for 2017/18 by 0.11%
  • Changing hearts and minds – overcoming barriers and transforming internal culture to effectively promote and deliver apprenticeships
  • Making the most effective and efficient use of the levy and exploring how the local authority shares it with local employers
  • Sharing guidance around effective procurement practices and partnership working with apprenticeship providers to create opportunities around themes such as occupational therapy and social work
  • Developing career pathways for young people in the workplace by making use of the additional funding for 16-18 year olds
  • Linking the apprenticeship agenda with wider city development and regeneration projects

Roland Bryant, Apprenticeship Lead, Portsmouth City Council (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Creating Apprenticeship Opportunities Through Effective Stakeholder Engagement and Partnership Working

  • Supporting the promotion, development and take-up of apprenticeships through the Leeds Apprenticeship Hub, working with young people, local employers and training providers to create new vacancies 
  • Working effectively with stakeholders to organise the Leeds Apprenticeship Recruitment Fair, attracting around 6,000 visitors and 130 local and national employers, and receiving extremely positive feedback 
  • Running a range of bespoke, sector-specific seminars in partnership with LeedsBID and Leeds Becket University to engage with parents, recognising they are one of the most important groups supporting young people to make positive career choices
  • Collaborating with local schools in Leeds to promote apprenticeship opportunities and educate young people about the benefits they offer as a viable route into employment, especially those at risk of dropping out and becoming a NEET 

Julia Massey, Head of Employment Access and Growth, Leeds City Council (CONFIRMED)

Libby Megson, HR Service Manager, Leeds City Council (CONFIRMED) 


Case Study: Widening Access to Pre-Apprenticeship Opportunities Through a Supported Internship Scheme

  • Outlining how funding was secured from DfE and ESFA to deliver a pilot programme of supported internships in NHS Trusts for young people with learning disabilities, difficulties or autism (LDDA)
  • Reporting on the successes, challenges and lessons learnt from planning and delivering the pilot scheme across the North East, and how it will be rolled-out nationally 
  • Providing training to over 500 members of staff to enable them to become work-based mentors, working alongside and supporting learners during their placement 
  • Evaluating how the scheme was designed to support and accommodate the specialised needs of interns with LDDA  
  • Exploring how similar pre-apprenticeship initiatives could be implemented in other public sector organisations and settings 

Emily Childerstone, Project Choice Apprenticeship/Transition Lead, Health Education England (HEE) (CONFIRMED) 


Questions and Answers Session


Chair's Summary and Close

*Programme subject to change 


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