Covid-19 Guidance for Employers

Derby College Group (DCG) is committed to support employers and students to continue to complete their apprenticeship during the government measures put in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

New measures have been introduced by The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) to make it easier for apprenticeships to continue and complete in a different way, if they need to, or to break and resume an apprenticeship later when that becomes possible.

DCG’s objective during this time is to support all employers to retain their apprentices, and to help them plan with more certainty through this difficult period. Your commitment to the continuation of high-quality apprenticeships is a vital part of supporting the economic recovery that will follow this pandemic.

If you have any questions or concerns, please call 01332 387421 or refer to the direct email addresses at the end of this document.

Your Assessor is still on hand to guide you through any concerns you may face during this time. Please raise any questions or concerns you may experience in regard to Training, Assessments, Employment or Breaks in Learning with your Assessor before taking any action.

Training

DCG has already put on-line measures in place to continue apprentices’ off-the-job training; this includes access to distance learning tools, on-line assignments, virtual teaching and remote (Skype, telephone) reviews with Assessors. The use of OneFile (e-portfolio) will support apprentice progress monitoring

Continuity of learning is paramount to the student’s successful completion of their apprenticeship, ensuring they have the skills, knowledge and behaviours needed to positively contribute to your business. Please honour the apprentice’s 20% off the job training requirement, allowing them the opportunity to undertake the learning needed.

Assessment

Apprentices who are deemed ready for assessment and cannot be assessed due to COVID-19 related issues, will be able to have their End Point Assessment (EPA) rescheduled, with an extension to the assessment timeframe if needed.

Please raise any questions or concerns you have regarding EPA with your apprentice’s Assessor.

Employment

Our aim is to provide employer support before there is a disruption to your apprentices’ employment. We can help you make the right decisions regarding a granted leave of absence, placed on unpaid leave, or where you may need to move your apprentice into a different and/or business critical role that isn’t related to their apprenticeship.

Please talk to your apprentices’ Assessor before making any final decisions. Financial support is available and employers are able to access the government’s package of measures to support businesses to withstand the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Payments to Derby College Group

Where apprentice’s remain on programme, please continue to pay your apprentices’ training costs via invoice or your apprenticeship levy service as normal.

If you are facing financial difficulty in paying, please do not stop payment but contact us for advice and support: damon.mears@derby-college.ac.uk

Support Finder Tool

The Government has provided a tool to help businesses and self-employed people across the UK to quickly and easily determine what financial support is available to them during the coronavirus pandemic.

The tool requires business owners to fill out a simple online questionnaire, which can take minutes to complete, and they will then be directed to a list of all financial support they may be eligible for.

To access this took click here https://www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder

FAQs and further information

Q. What do I do if I think an apprentice is not well enough to work (especially in a health setting)?
A. Employers should notify us as soon as possible and follow the government’s guidance for employers and businesses on coronavirus (COVID-19).

Q. What will happen if my apprentice is not well enough to take end-point assessment?
A. If your apprentice is unwell, or in a period of self-isolation, and unable to attend end-point assessment, please contact us as soon as you are able, to allow us maximum time to re-schedule the assessment.

Q. I am a non-levy paying employer recruiting for/having apprentices due to start. Can I still go ahead and reserve funds on the system?
A. Employers who do not pay the apprenticeship levy are able to reserve apprenticeship funding through the apprenticeship service in line with the published guidance.

Q. What happens to my funding reservation as a non-levy employer, if my apprentice can’t start?
A. Reservations will expire if they are not turned into a commitment within 3 months of the apprenticeship start date, detailed in the reservation. Where a commitment is needed, and a previous reservation has expired, a new reservation must first be made.

Key contacts

Derby College Group - 01332 387421

Where you have a specific enquiry please contact the following:

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