Helping councils support apprenticeships in schools

The LGA has developed a toolkit to support local authorities who are working with schools to create apprenticeship opportunities.

As part of the government’s apprenticeships reforms, local authorities are considered to be the employer for most maintained schools in their areas for the purposes of both the apprenticeships levy and public sector target. This means that councils have an important role in helping schools make the most of the opportunities apprenticeships offer.

Since the Apprenticeship Levy was introduced in April 2017, schools across England have been working hard to use apprenticeships to upskill and transform their workforces. The government estimate that over 31,610 people have started an apprenticeship in schools in England between April 2017 and March 2022. Over 2,000 maintained schools across England have taken on at least one apprentice in the last two years and hundreds more are exploring how to do the same using the apprenticeship levy.

Maintained schools contribute around £83 million per year towards the Apprenticeship Levy, and local authorities are working hard to help them spend this funding in a way that allows schools to invest in their staff development, fill skills gaps, and deliver a better learning experience for their pupils.

The LGA has developed a series of resources to help local authorities working with schools support the development of their apprenticeship programmes and create more starts. Our Schools Toolkit has been developed using the knowledge and experiences of schools and local authorities across England and is intended to provide a simple guide and set of templates to help schools to start or expand their apprenticeship programme with support from their local authority.

The toolkit comprises our main guide and a series of stand-alone templates, handouts and leaflets for Head Teachers, school staff and Local Authorities to use and adapt for the particular circumstances at each Local Authority and school. Each tool has been developed from successful practice in councils working with schools and can be downloaded and customised. The tools include:

  • About Apprenticeships in Schools Leaflet 
  • Myth-busting Posters / Templates
  • School Apprenticeship Plan Template 
  • Training Provider Selection Checklist Template 
  • School Apprenticeship Survey Template 
  • LA Schools Apprenticeship ‘Action Plan on a Page’ Template 
  • A to Z of Apprenticeships for Schools 
  • Workforce Planning in Schools - A guide to using apprenticeship to recruit, retain and retrain staff in your schools  
  • Apprenticeship Funding and Accessing the Levy - A guide for schools
  • Apprenticeships and Your School Staff – A guide for Governors 
  • Apprenticeships and Your Career – A guide for school staff 
  • Using the A to Z of Apprenticeship for Schools and Roles and Career Pathways – A guide for schools 
  • Using Off the Job Training in Apprenticeships to Add Value to Your School - A guide for schools 
  • Apprenticeship Roles and Career Pathways - Teaching Assistant 
  • Apprenticeship Roles and Career Pathways - Teacher 
  • Apprenticeship Roles and Career Pathways - Catering
  • Apprenticeship Roles and Career Pathways – Caretaking and Maintenance
  • Apprenticeship Roles and Career Pathways - Back Office and Support
  • Apprenticeship Roles and Career Pathways - Digital and ICT

We intend for this toolkit to be a living document and will continue to update it with more case studies, tools and templates as they become available. 

And that’s where we need you! If you’re a council or your schools are doing something innovative on apprenticeships, have had success with a particular programme, or have developed a useful tool or document that has proved successful we want to hear from you. Send us your ideas, experiences, case studies and tools so we can build up the toolkit further and make sure we’re sharing all the good practice that is going on around the country with the sector.

Copies of the toolkit are available in our Apprenticeships group on the KHUB here or by emailing LGA Apprenticeships Adviser Jamie Saddler. You can also email Jamie if you have any materials to share, or questions about the toolkit.