Update on grant reform

Over the last two years, CITB have consulted widely with employers about how to make the grants scheme improve training outcomes to support the core construction trades. They asked for the scheme to be focused on supporting construction skills training, simple to access and easy to understand.

Principles

In response, CITB have created a set of principles that will help assess how grant should be used and what training it will support. These are:

  1. encourage training specifically related to the construction industry, aligned to CITB’s scope order
  2. align funding to priorities and standards – focusing our support on delivering training that meets industry-agreed standards, so the skills achieved are universally recognised and portable
  3. support all Levy registered employers and the full sub-contractor workforce – delivering right across the supply chain
  4. use targeted funding to support industry priorities – enhance support for the areas where the need is greatest
  5. prioritise investment in areas where there is a long term commitment and return on investment – such as apprenticeships and vocational qualifications

Focus

In line with the principles, the grants scheme will focus on:

  • apprenticeships
  • vocational qualifications
  • short duration courses

CITB will work with industry to determine the training to be supported, estimating the likely take-up and priorities for industry to establish rates that are both an incentive and affordable.

Refocusing the grants scheme

This renewed focus means that the future grants scheme will not support the full range of business activities that it currently does. We will support some management and leadership skills training but training for generic activities such as HR, administration and accountancy will not receive grant support in future.

However, we will work with employers to review where training has a specific element identified as particularly related to the industry, including management and leadership skills, and might benefit from support that is affordable.

CITB will not withdraw any support until the reforms are ready and tested.

As our Grant Reform programme develops, we will provide details to ensure you are informed of what is happening as early as possible and can plan accordingly. 

August 2017 update

Support for higher Level Apprenticeships commences in September 2017

From September 2017, we will support higher level apprenticeships. These will be construction-related, in-scope, and relate to training above NVQ level 3.

The grant rates for Higher Level Apprenticeships will be:

  • £1,125 pa (paid in quarterly instalments) for attendance (irrespective of actual number of days spent training off the job)
  • achievement Grant of £3,125. 

Rates for Apprenticeships will remain unchanged for 2018

The current rates that apply to apprenticeships will remain for the grant year starting on 1 April. Check details for apprenticeships at Grants available. 

Claiming grant through training plans will stop on 31 March 2018

From 1 April 2018 grants for training will be paid only for apprenticeships, vocational qualifications and short duration courses that have defined training outcomes.

This means:

  • any training plans started since April 2017 will attract grant only for training carried out up to the 31 March 2018
  • this applies to all training plans that have already started, and any that are still to start
  • you can still submit a training plan grant claim up to 30 June 2018, but only for training completed by 31 March 2018

Many employers find the training plans useful and so may continue to use them, but CITB will not use them to assess grant.  

Supplementary Grant payments will stop from April 2018

Supplementary Grant payments have been paid to employers in the past for submitting their Levy return on time. We indicated in the consultation events during the Spring and in a number of other forums our intention to cease paying Supplementary Grant. This is because it is only benefiting a minority of employers and our reforms are designed to reach as wide a pool of employers as possible.

We are confirming that we will stop paying Supplementary Grant from the new grant year starting 1 April 2018. This includes not paying grant on training that has commenced before this date and is continuing beyond it.

However, where employers have apprentices who have already started before 1 April 2018 and had submitted their Levy Returns on time, we will enhance the rates they are paid for those apprentices by 10% until they complete their training. There will be no enhancement for new apprentices who start from 1 April 2018.

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