T Levels and local government

Icon silhouette image of a girl with the word T Levels
This publication provides advice and guidance to councils to support the planning and delivery of high quality T Level industry placements.

Why is the LGA supporting T Level qualifications?

The LGA see both short and long-term benefits of supporting T Levels. T Levels can be the first step towards a career in local government, and a fantastic way to promote the opportunities available to young people.

  • Raise awareness: T Levels will allow councils to access and engage young people to improve understanding of local government and what it’s like to work in the sector.
  • Increase diversity in councils: Industry placements will introduce young people to careers within local government. You can access a new generation of potential employees from different backgrounds.
  • Job ready skills development: T Levels allow councils to develop the skills, knowledge and behaviours of local young people, helping them to establish a good foundation for future work in public services.
  • Additional resource to councils: Industry placements can increase capacity within teams, whether it is for specific projects or developing services.

 T Levels home page

74 per cent of councils stated they were experiencing difficulties recruiting for some occupations and roles.

The LGA T Level toolkit

At the LGA we recognise councils face increasing pressure and additional burdens to deliver local services whilst still attracting, recruiting, developing, managing, and retaining their workforce. We know capacity to engage in new initiatives and new opportunities is always a challenge. 

The LGA’s T Level toolkit has been created in partnership with the Department for Education and Gatsby Charitable Foundation. The toolkit provides advice and guidance to councils to support the planning and delivery of high quality industry placements, which form part of a T Level qualification.

What are T Levels?

T Levels are qualifications for students after GCSEs and are equivalent to three A Levels. These two-year courses have been developed in collaboration with employers and businesses so the content meets the needs of industry. They offer students a mixture of classroom learning and ‘on the job’ experience during an industry placement of around 45 days (at least 315 hours) spent with an employer.

Following the completion of their T Level, young people are well-prepared to progress into skilled employment, further training including apprenticeships, or higher education such as higher technical qualifications or undergraduate study.

Further information about T Levels, including how they have been developed with employers, is available on the DfE website.

What is an industry placement?

Every T Level includes an industry placement with an employer focused on developing the practical and technical skills required for the occupation. A placement will last for a minimum of 45 days and is structured for young people to develop work skills and make a meaningful contribution to your organisation.

An industry placement is required to be occupationally specific to the T Level course the student is studying. The placement can be based in the employer's premises.

More information about industry placements and detailed guidance is available on the DfE website.

The Institute for Economic Studies found 62 per cent of young people agreed COVID-19 had a negative impact on how confident they feel about accessing employment.

What are the progression routes for industry placements?

T Levels equip students with the technical and workplace skills required within industry. Progression routes for T Levels include higher apprenticeships, entry level employment or higher education. T Levels focus on 80 per cent academic study, and 20 per cent industry placement, which is key to ensuring young people are ready to enter the workplace and their desired sector. 

You can learn more about how T Levels industry placements can contribute to your workforce on the DfE website.

What are the benefits of supporting with T Levels and industry placements?

T Level industry placements harness the potential of young people and create a pipeline of talent.

During their placement young people develop knowledge and practical skills to help them thrive in their career and make a meaningful contribution to your organisation.

Benefits for councils

  • A pipeline of talent to help address hard to fill vacancies across a wide range of roles - students can go onto secure apprenticeships, graduate programmes, or employment within your council. 
  • An opportunity to promote councils as employers to young people in your locality. 
  • Create a new avenue to increase diversity in recruitment in your organisation.
  • An opportunity for existing staff to develop management and mentoring skills. 
  • Progression routes can be shaped through industry placements. Successful young people on placements can go on to secure apprenticeships, graduate programmes or employment within your council. 

Further information about the benefits that industry placements offer for employers can be found on the DfE T Levels website.

Benefits for young people and your community

  • Contribute to the development of the next generation of workforce – increasing opportunities for young people. 
  • Increase young people’s confidence and employability to help them secure employment.
  • Create a skilled workforce for your local economy. 
Under 25-year-olds make up only 4.6 per cent of the local government workforce.

What T Level subjects are relevant to local government?

The first T Levels were introduced in 2020 and over 20 subjects will be available over the next few years across eleven areas. These are:

  • agriculture, environments and animal care
  • business and administration
  • catering and hospitality
  • construction
  • creative and design
  • digital
  • education and childcare
  • engineering and manufacturing
  • hair and beauty
  • health and science
  • legal, finance and accounting.

Further information about T Level subjects, including which subjects may be useful for your organisation, and where to find your local education provider is available on the DfE website.

Case studies

You can find stories of successful T Level industry placements in the case studies section of our website.

Further information

Support in delivering T Levels is available from the Strategic Development Network accessed through the gov.uk T Level employer support page.

If you have any questions about T levels and local government, you can email [email protected]

T Levels home page

Orange, purple and light orange banner line