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Chancellor Announces a Summer Statement in Response to Coronavirus

By: Rachel Miller

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a raft of new measures designed to protect, support and create jobs, including a job retention bonus.

Rishi Sunak Covid-19, 10 Downing Street mini budget

The “Plan for jobs” announced by the chancellor in his summer statement is part of the government’s plan to secure the UK’s economic recovery from coronavirus.

The key measures are:

  • A new Job Retention Bonus will be paid to employers who bring staff back from furlough. UK employers will be paid £1,000 for each employee who is continuously employed until the end of January 2021 earning over the lower earnings limit (£520 per month).
  • There will be a new Kick Start Scheme to support the creation of jobs for young people aged 16-25. Funding will cover 100% of the relevant National Minimum Wage for 25 hours a week, plus employer NICs and minimum statutory employer pension contributions. The scheme will target those on Universal Credit who are deemed to be at risk of long-term unemployment.
  • There will be additional funding for employers providing traineeships. The Government will fund employers in England who provide trainees aged 16-24 with work experience, at a rate of £1,000 per trainee.
  • From 1st August 2020 to 31st January 2021, the Government will pay employers in England £2,000 for each new apprentice they hire under the age of 25 and £1,500 per apprentice aged over 25. This is in addition to previously announced incentives.
  • The rate of VAT will be cut on food and non-alcoholic drinks from 20% to 5% from 15 July 2020 to 12 January 2021. The reduced (5%) rate will apply to supplies of food and non-alcoholic drinks from restaurants, pubs, bars, cafés and similar premises across the UK. The reduced rate also applies to supplies of accommodation and admission to attractions across the UK.
  • A temporary ‘Eat Out to Help Out‘ scheme will run throughout August. Every diner in participating establishments across the UK will receive a 50% discount (up to £10 per head) on their meal. The discount can be used unlimited times and will be valid Monday to Wednesday on any eat-in meal (including on non-alcoholic drinks). Participating establishments will be fully reimbursed for the 50% discount.
  • The nil rate band of Residential Stamp Duty Land Tax will be extended with immediate effect from £125,000 to £500,000 until 31 March 2020.
  • A new Green Homes Grant to support green jobs will provide homeowners and landlords with vouchers to pay £3 for every £2 spent making a home energy efficient (up to £5,000 per household). For those on the lowest incomes, the scheme will fully fund energy efficiency measures of up to £10,000 per household.
  • The Government also announced a range of measures to support the creation of jobs including: a Construction Talent Retention Scheme to support the redeployment of workers at risk of redundancy; a new Office for Talent which will focus on attracting, retaining and developing top research and science talent across the UK and internationally; a Green Jobs Challenge Fund to help environmental charities and public authorities create and protect 5,000 jobs in England; an Automotive Transformation Fund to develop and embed the next generation of cutting-edge automotive technologies in batteries, motors, electronics and fuel cells.

ESFA Reveals Covid Financial Support Offer for 16-19 Private Training Providers

Private training providers whose recruitment of 16 to 19 students has been “limited” due to Covid-19 have been offered financial support to ease budget pressures.

From 22nd June 2020, independent learning providers (ILPs) can make a business case to the Education and Skills Funding Agency to prevent clawback of any underperformance they have experienced for this group of learners.

The ESFA said:

“ILPs may be recruiting fewer part-time students than they would normally recruit between March 2020 to July 2020.

“This will impact on the level of funding that these students would usually attract and will result in clawback of funds for 2019 to 2020.

“The ESFA will support ILPs whose recruitment of students, to a 16 to 19 study programme, have been limited due to the lockdown situation and who have faced clawback for under performance.”

For approved cases, the ESFA said it will base the expected delivery in March to July on the previous year’s delivery for students recruited between 1 March 2019 and 31 July 2019, taking up to half of this into account.

In addition, the agency will “add the actual delivery for students recruited between March 2020 and July 2020, up to a maximum of 100 per cent of the 2018 to 2019 funded delivery for March 2019 to July 2019”.

No clawback relief will be possible if the cash delivery in 2019 to 2020 exceeds the cash delivery in 2018 to 2019 for the period from 1 March to 31 July for each year.

The ESFA added that to further support ILPs, they are extending the clawback period to include January 2021 to March 2021.

“The clawback that is planned for July 2020 will be included into the re-profiling, from August 2020 to March 2021. This does not need to be requested and will be shown in the R10 reconciliation statement.

“There may be a small number of exceptions where a risk to ESFA and public funds is identified. In these instances, we cannot delay July 2020 clawback, but we will extend the clawback profile until March 2021.”

The ESFA made clear this funding support is a “one-off” in response to the unexpected disruption caused by the arrival of coronavirus and ILPs should “not expect this to be repeated in future”.

ILPs making a business should also “not seek” support from government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) to furlough staff whose salaries are paid from continuing ESFA or any other public income.

“ILPs submitting a business case must demonstrate they have not received support from the CJRS to furlough staff involved in the continued direct delivery of provision remotely of 16 to 19 study programmes and where possible recruitment of 16 to 19 students between March 2020 to July 2020,” the ESFA said.

“The Department for Education is considering appropriate measures to monitor use of claims from CJRS in order to detect any duplication of public funding and will be considering potential options to recover misused public funding as required.”

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Financial Support for Education, Early Years and Children’s Social Care

Adult education and apprenticeship funded training providers “may be eligible for support” in line with the Cabinet Office’s supplier relief rules that allow payment in advance of delivery, the Department for Education has said.

In new guidance, the DfE wrote:

“Where a provider receives adult education budget (AEB), or apprenticeship funding, as part of a direct contract for services with ESFA, and is at risk financially, they may be eligible for support (subject to meeting additional criteria) as part of DfE’s response to the Cabinet Office’s Procurement Policy Note 02/20.

“Support provided through that mechanism would count as public funding for the purposes of conditions covering the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.”

The DfE’s guidance states that “further guidance on the operation of any supplier relief scheme for providers funded under a contract for services with ESFA will be published when available”.

Providers “should email ESFA.PPN220Queries@education.gov.uk to register their interest in the scheme”.

Full Guidance Link

£18m Extension to Opportunity Area Programme
November 5, 2019
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£18 million announced to extend the Opportunity Area programme to support social mobility in some of the most disadvantaged areas.

Young people in some of the most disadvantaged parts of England are set to benefit from an extra £18 million investment to build on improvements in educational outcomes, careers advice and attracting teachers.

Young girl colouring

The Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has today announced the Government’s Opportunity Areas (OA) programme will be extended for an additional year, building on its success so far in areas of the country where children have for too long been left behind.

The programme is also showing impact in a wide range of areas from early years education to employment, following an initial £72 million boost for interventions across literacy, maths, attendance, teacher training and recruitment, post-16 options and careers advice since its launch in 2017.

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

I grew up in Scarborough, now part of the North Yorkshire Coast Opportunity Area, and having returned recently for a visit I’ve seen for myself the progress being made and the difference it is making to young people living there.

Ability is evenly spread across the country, but opportunity isn’t. We’re determined to put right the wrongs of places left behind and see the Opportunity Area programme grow – helping local leaders and schools to tackle some of the greatest challenges young people face.

It’s not just about what happens now in these 12 areas but the impact these projects will have on future generations and paving the way for them to overcome obstacles to success.

The programme has been operating in 12 Opportunity Areas across the country – Blackpool, Derby, Norwich, Oldham, North Yorkshire Coast, West Somerset, Bradford, Doncaster, Fenland and East Cambridgeshire, Hastings, Ipswich and Stoke-on-Trent. Areas were chosen because they face some of the most entrenched obstacles to social mobility and were set up to improve outcomes and increase opportunities for all young people in these areas.

West Somerset has shown progress in early years’ development, with performance historically below the national average for pupil outcomes at the end of reception year, but now showing year on year improvements. The Story Start scheme is one of a range of early years’ initiatives, supporting families in rural areas to play, chat and read to boost their child’s development so they can start school with the skills needed to thrive.

Across all the Opportunity Areas around 60,000 young people have also been given the chance to develop life skills like resilience, teamwork, problem-solving, confidence and leadership thanks to a share of the £22 million Essential Life Skills programme.

Today’s funding extends the programme into a fourth year, which will run until August 2021, to help sustain long term improvements and outcomes.

Schemes put in place to improve maths are showing signs of success across some Opportunity Areas. In Ipswich, six weeks of Saturday maths classes provide targeted support, free bus travel and food for disadvantaged Year 11s at risk of not getting a GCSE level 4 or 5, with the first 75 pupils enrolled showing an average boost in predicted grades of 1.3 in comparison to the start of the programme.

£19 Million Vital Support for Care Leavers Announced
October 24, 2019
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#ECLCM – Multi-million pound settlement and cross-Government action announced to help young #CareLeavers

  • £10 million to create stable homes for care leavers as they become adults
  • £6 million to support young people leaving care to live independently
  • £3 million pupil premium plus to help care leavers into further education
  • 1,000 new paid internships for care leavers by 2022 in the police, fire service, defence civilian roles, and health service to help these young people into skilled employment

Access to better housing, healthcare and employment opportunities are at the core of a new multi-million pound settlement to improve the life chances of vulnerable young people leaving care.

Marking #NationalCareLeaversWeek, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has today (Wednesday 23 October) announced the new cross-government support available to young people leaving the care system, alongside £19 million of investment into programmes that directly benefit care leavers.

The new funding includes £10 million to create stable homes for care leavers as they become adults; £6 million to support young people leaving care to live independently and £3 million to help care leavers go into further education.

Chaired by Mr Williamson and Minister for the Cabinet Office, Oliver Dowden, the new Care Leaver Covenant Board, will comprise of Secretaries of State from across relevant government departments and will meet three times a year to address the key barriers facing young care leavers as the adjust to independent life as adults: finding a suitable, safe place to live, supporting them to remain in education, employment or training, and helping them access appropriate healthcare. It will also look at how to support councils to employ adolescent mental health workers in every leaving care team in the country.

Alongside this, the Education Secretary has committed to delivering 1,000 internships for care leavers over the next two years to help secure long term, quality jobs for care leavers. This will include expanding the existing Civil Service Internship Scheme which has offered permanent jobs to 220 care leavers across Whitehall and working with other public sector bodies including the NHS, Ministry of Defence civilian roles, police and the fire service to support care leavers into new employment opportunities. 

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said

“Young people leaving care face enormous barriers in their lives as they move towards independence, from not having a trusted person in their life to rely on, to not having a safe home to return to at the end of the day.

“Housing, healthcare and education are three of the biggest obstacles they have to overcome. We all have a responsibility to do better for them – so I’m bringing together colleagues from across government to join me in transforming the support we offer care leavers in all of these key areas to make the biggest difference in their lives.

“This starts immediately, because we must raise the bar for these young people, to give them greater stability and a strong sense of purpose in adulthood.”

The new offer for care leavers builds on existing work by the Department for Education to tackle the root causes for children being taken into care, through projects designed to strengthen families and support stable home lives for vulnerable children so that they can stay with their birth families when it is safe to do so and in that child’s best interest. It adds to extra funding announced last week to help adoptive families build strong relationships and overcome past trauma, and practical support announced earlier this month for foster families in the form of short breaks, mentoring and social activities.

In addition to the new internships and ministerial group, the full package of new announcements includes:

  • £10 million to expand Staying Put, a programme designed to create stable homes for care leavers as they become adults. The programme will help more care leavers to continue living with their foster families until they reach 21. This will the stability will boost their numbers in employment or staying in education and make a smooth transition into living independently.
  • £6 million in 2021/22 to roll out Staying Close across the country, helping young people leaving residential care to continue to get on-going support from their previous carers they know and trust, which will help them to successfully live independently.
  • £3 million to extend the Pupil Premium Plus to all 16-18 year old care leavers, supporting their transition into further education. This is to help them be ambitious in their choice of qualifications and to make sure that there is a greater chance that they will complete their chosen course.

This transformation in support for care leavers will help improve their outcomes, addressing the number of those aged 19 to 21 who are deemed ‘not in education, employment or training’ (NEET). Almost 40% of care leavers are NEET compared to 13% for this age group overall. The new internships, each being a one-year paid offer, are designed to lead to full-time job offers, and follows an expansion of the civil service internship scheme for care leavers from 2021, which is currently offering 220 internships across 25 departments in the next year.

Expanding the scheme is part of the government’s drive to provide care leavers with opportunities to learn new skills in a range of employment areas, whether the police, or other public bodies.  

The ministerial group will agree key goals across relevant policy areas which will be scrutinised by members, which will include the Secretaries of State from the Minister of Housing, Communities and Local Government, the Department of Health and Social Care and Home Office.   

Minister for the Cabinet Office, Oliver Dowden, said:

“My role in the Cabinet Office is to pull together all the different parts of government, so that they work together on the issues that really matter. Through better coordination we can massively improve the support that’s available to young people leaving the care system and make sure they can become independent adults with a bright future ahead of them.”

Ian Dickson, Chair of the Conference for Care Experienced People which met with Mr Williamson on Monday to mark National Care Leavers Week, said:

“The Education Secretary listened very attentively and reflected that our commitment to ‘care experienced’ people should be a lifelong one – similar to the commitment we make towards members of the Armed Forces. We thought he really got it: care experience is a continuous lifetime experience bringing different needs at different stages that may not accord with the statutory definition of care and leaving care. Care does not end at 18, 21 or 25.”

Up to £10,000 and a Free Learning Programme for Community Businesses
September 6, 2019
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The Community Business Trade Up Programme, run by the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE), in partnership with Power to Change, will open for applications from Tuesday 17 September until Wednesday 27 November 2019. 

The programme supports the leaders of community businesses with:

  • A fully-funded learning programme (12 learning days, spread over nine months)
  • A Match Trading™ grant of up to £10,000
  • A community of supportive peers

The learning programme will help the leaders of community businesses to develop the skills, strengths and networks they need to increase their impact, with a focus on increasing their sales and income from trading. It will run from April to December 2020, and there are places for 80 community business leaders across England who will learn in groups of 10. The programme is delivered by the School for Social Entrepreneurs at seven locations across England.

The Match Trading grant, created by SSE, is a new type of grant funding that pound-for-pound matches an increase in income from trading. By rewarding sales growth, Match Trading incentivises social organisations to develop their trading base, so they can build stronger futures. The first cohort of the Community Business Trade Up Programme achieved a typical 92% increase in income from trading.

Alastair Wilson, CEO of School for Social Entrepreneurs, said: 

“We’re delighted to partner with Power to Change for a third year, so we can jointly support a further 80 community business in England to grow. Community businesses strengthen local economies and enrich the fabric of society. But running them can be challenging. We’ll help community business leaders develop the skills, strengths and networks they need to improve their sustainability and impact, with the support of Match Trading grants and a learning approach we’ve refined over 21 years.”

Jenny Sansom, programmes manager at Power to Change, said: 

“This programme will give a really important step up for relatively new community businesses and help them to focus on their trading activities and long-term sustainability. The first cohort of this kind of funding enjoyed a 92% increase in trading, which is a huge impact. I’m delighted to be opening up this programme for a new group of community businesses.” 

The Community Business Trade Up programme has already supported more than 200 community business leaders since 2017.

Community businesses from across England can find out more and apply now until 27 November 2019.

Power to Change and SSE will be hosting a free webinar about the programme on Friday 4 October at 11am. To register follow the link below

free webinar about the programme

Opportunity for Education and Skills Training Providers to bid for European Social Funding in four Local Enterprise Partnership Areas
September 3, 2019
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Bidding process for £4.2m of funding opens on Monday 2 September 2019.

Earlier this year, the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) ran a successful European Social Fund procurement, where 47 providers secured a total of £309 million to deliver high quality education and training across 34 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).

These contracts started on 01 April 2019 and will run until 31 July 2021. However, there were a small number of areas where none of the providers that bid for funding met the required criteria.

The ESFA is now running an additional targeted procurement worth £4.2 million, so that people living in these areas have the opportunity to benefit from the ESF by learning the skills they need to get on the path to a great career.

The LEP areas are:
Skills Support for the Unemployed
  • York North Yorkshire & East Riding LEP
Community Grants programmes
  • Greater Lincolnshire LEP (Transition Area)
  • North East LEP (More Developed Area)
  • The Marches LEP (More Developed Area)
  • The Marches LEP (Transition Developed Area)

To access the invitations to tender, interested parties need to

 register and follow the on-screen instructions.

The deadline for bids is Wednesday 2 October 2019 at 17.00. Once the procurement has closed, the ESFA will send award notifications to successful providers. We will then enter a 10-day standstill period, in accordance with procurement practise.

Apply for Funding: T Level Teacher Regional Improvement Projects (TRIPs)
August 21, 2019
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The Department for Education is working in partnership with the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) to offer high-quality professional development support to teachers, trainers and leaders delivering T Levels from 2020 onwards.

Through the T Level Professional Development offer there is an opportunity for 2020, 2021 and future T Level providers to participate in sector-led, collaborative action research projects, known as Teacher Regional Improvement Projects (TRIPs).

TRIPs should aim to develop teaching practice in preparation for T Levels and ultimately ensure that learners undertaking T Levels develop the knowledge, skills, behaviours and competencies required, and understand how they are applied in the occupation they want to progress into.

50 collaborative TRIPs will be funded across England. 31 TRIPs were commissioned in June 2019. Profiles of the 31 TRIPs are available on the ETF website

This inviation to tender is for the remaining 19 TRIPs, which can be delivered on a national or regional level.

£45,000 will be awarded to each TRIP.

£20,000 is for project funding while the remaining £25,000 will be allocated for TRIP participants to access remission funding to allow them to participate in the wider T Level Professional Development offer.

Further information on available CPD can be found on the ETF websiteOnly providers who participate in TRIPs will be eligible to access remission funds. 

Each TRIP must involve a minimum of four organisations; one of which must be a 2020 T Level provider. One organisation must be appointed as the project lead.  

Each TRIP is managed and supported by one of the three Knowledge Hubs operating in their area:

For further information and to apply to deliver a TRIP, please download the following documents:

TLPD TRIP guidance to applicants – August 2019 .pdf

TLPD TRIP guidance to applicants – August 2019 .docx

The deadline to apply is 12pm Friday 11 October 2019.

Applications should be submitted to the T Level Knowledge Hub in the lead organisation’s region, using the contact details above.

If you are interested in being involved in a TRIP and would like some further guidance on delivery and sourcing project partners, please contact the T Level Knowledge Hub in your region please contact projects@aoc.co.uk

Leeds City Region LEP: £2m for Leadership and Management Skills
August 8, 2019
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DWP call to run a project to deliver activities to support the leadership and management skills of women in SME businesses in the Leeds City Region LEP area.

Details

Projects are sought which will support female participants within SMEs to develop the Leadership and Management Skills to support business growth and facilitate progression into management positions and business continuity where there are skills shortages.

Activities should concentrate on business productivity, skills needs and succession planning. Every business is different and training needs to be flexible to respond to these differing circumstances. Support should also be tailored and relevant to support women-owned and BAME owned businesses and to female and BAME employees.

It is also anticipated that the Leadership and Management skills provision will have a particular emphasis on future workforce planning and ensuring participation in the business from those from disadvantaged groups.

All activities must complement and avoid duplication with other provision, thereby adding value. Successful candidates will be required to ensure that ESF provision will clearly add value and not duplicate any provision that can be arranged locally through existing mainstream institutions.

For more information, download the call specification.

Location

The project must cover the Leeds City Region LEP area.

Value

Approximately £2m of ESF is available.

Deadlines

Full application deadline: 29 October 2019

Completion date

Projects must be completed no later than 3 years and 6 months after the proposed project start date, however the ESF Managing Authority reserves the right to vary the maximum duration in exceptional circumstances. All ESF Projects must be completed by 31st December 2023. Project costs cannot be incurred beyond this date.

Full Application Submission

To apply for funding under this call you will need to complete and submit your Full Application via the ECLAIMS IT System.

Full Applications submitted in the ECLAIMS IT System after the call closing date shown above and on the call specification will not be appraised.

If you do not already have access to the ECLAIMS IT system, please request an ‘ECLAIMS External Access Form’ by emailing E.CLAIMSSUPPORT@dwp.gov.uk

You will need to request an External Access Form for each person in your organisation who requires access.

It is your responsibility to ensure you request and activate your ECLAIMS access in sufficient time. We strongly advise that you obtain and activate your ECLAIMS access at least 2 weeks prior to the advertised call closure date, if not sooner.

The published ESF Online Full Application Guidance also provides step-by-step advice on how to complete your Full Application using the ECLAIMS IT system. ESF Online Full Application Guidance.

Technical Support

If you encounter any technical difficulties completing or submitting your Full Application via the ECLAIMS IT system, please send an email to E.CLAIMSSUPPORT@dwp.gov.uk

The technical support operating hours are Monday to Friday, from 8am to 6pm and it is your responsibility to ensure you seek and technical advice in sufficient time to complete and submit your Full Application before the published call closure date.

The Managing Authority reserves the right to reject applications which are incomplete or not submitted in a timely and compliant way.

Contact details

If you have any questions about the Call Specification or ESF Online Full Application Guidance, please contact esf.2014-2020@dwp.gov.uk. This address should not be used to request technical support.

Workshop for Potential VocTech Impact Applicants: Lincoln
June 9, 2019
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The UFI Charitable Trust are looking to offer grants for innovative uses of digital technology that enable large numbers of adults to access and develop the skills they need for work.

They are running pre-application face to face workshops to hear more about funding and discuss applications with Ufi staff. You must log in to your Ufi account in order to register for a workshop.