Revised apprenticeship funding rules

The Education & Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) issued revised funding rules for apprenticeship providers last month. These include substantial amendments to the section about apprentices who need access to learning support. 

Learning support funding is available to meet the costs of putting in place reasonable adjustments, as set out in section 20 of the Equality Act 2010, for apprentices who have a learning difficulty or disability as defined in Section 15ZA(6) of the Education Act 1996 (as amended by section 41 of the Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Act 2009):

(a) the person has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of persons of the same age, or

(b) the person has a disability which either prevents or hinders the person from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided by institutions providing education or training for persons who are over compulsory school age.


P84  Before a claim for learning support funding can be made, an assessment must be undertaken to identify whether an apprentice has a learning difficulty or disability that directly impacts their ability to complete the apprenticeship on which they are enrolled.

P85  Where the assessment identifies a need for reasonable adjustments to enable the apprentice to complete their apprenticeship, and where the provision of reasonable adjustments will incur costs to the provider, this must be clearly evidenced and documented. This must include:

All of this evidence must be in place, and the reasonable adjustments being delivered, in order to qualify for learning support funding for each month that it is claimed. Further details about the evidence requirements can be found in paragraph P370.

  1. P85.1  documented evidence demonstrating the apprentice’s learning difficulty or disability;

  2. P85.2  a documented assessment of how progress towards completion of the apprenticeship would be directly impacted without the reasonable adjustments being put in place;

  3. P85.3  details of the reasonable adjustments necessary to enable the apprentice to complete their apprenticeship; and

  4. P85.4  a documented and clear plan for delivering the reasonable adjustments throughout the apprenticeship. This plan must be agreed and signed-off by the apprentice, and with the apprentice’s consent, it should be shared with the apprentice’s employer.


Further details are at