Victoria Mansfield

Is travel/transport acceptable learning support expenditure?

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Is a travel allowance (or even specific transport costs) an acceptable use of learning support funding for apprentices? I'm not sure if this comes under 'reasonable adjustments' or not. Any advice appreciated! :)

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Martin West

No No No

Victoria Mansfield

Could you make your answer a little less ambiguous? ;) Thanks as always Martin!

Martin West

This poorly documented in the funding rules, travel costs when undertaking an Apprenticeship is not funded from the Levy or by the ESFA as it the responsibility of the Employer to fund any excess travel costs over and above the employee’s normal travel to work costs which is the responsibility of the Employee (Apprentice).

P107 For main providers and the delivery of training and on-programme assessment, ineligible costs include the following:

P107.2 Travel costs for apprentices under any circumstances.

Travel costs are excluded from learning support for those who need reasonable adjustments to enable the apprentice to complete their apprenticeship, but they may be able to get help from Access to Work for getting to and from work.

There are various organisations CITB, NHS and other bodies that may be able to help by reimbursing Apprentices travel costs to employers and there are also travel discounts available to apprentices https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/808971/apprenticeship_discounts_co_and_onehr_v2.pdf

Hope that helps.

Martin West

In past funding rules it was possible to funding travel costs for Apprenticeship Frameworks from disadvantaged uplift funding:

P108 You will also receive a payment if, at the start of the apprenticeship, the apprentice is undertaking an apprenticeship framework and is recorded on the ILR as having a postcode prior to enrolment, listed within the 27% most deprived areas of the country according to the index of multiple deprivation (IMD) 2015. This additional disadvantage uplift is supplementary to the negotiated price and therefore not impacted by the eligible and ineligible costs listed in paragraphs P93 to P98. The disadvantage uplift should be used on costs to support the apprentice’s training, for example on travel costs or personal support.

Although disadvantaged uplift does not apply to Apprenticeship Standards the same principle would apply where you had a source of funding other than from the Levy, co-investment, ESFA or DFE (not from government funding) then this could be used for the same purpose.

Victoria Mansfield

Ah, that's fantastic, thank you! It looks like it's worth us taking a look to see if there are schemes available to all our apprentices not just those with mobility issues. Good to know! Thanks again for your help and the extra info :)