Julie Maycock

Part time learner duration of training


Advice please. 

I know the funding rules provide the criteria to calculate the extended programme for learners contracted for less than 30 hours but what if that learner wants to do the apprenticeship over the same period as their colleagues who are full time and also on programme. Surely if the employer agrees to give the additional time this can be agreed? 




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Martin West

In theory you can set the duration of the practical period to what the employer requires (in line with the funding rules) but you must take into consideration the minimum 20% OTJ training requirement, the minimum duration, and the requirement to extend this where the Apprentice is part time.

Minimum 20% OTJ training

P45 To be eligible for government funding at least 20% of the apprentice’s normal working hours, over the planned duration of the apprenticeship practical period must be spent on off-the-job training.

Minimum duration

P31 An apprenticeship must provide for a practical period of work and training that lasts for a minimum duration of 12 months. This includes where the content, duration and price has been adjusted to recognise prior learning (see paragraphs P58 to P63). For example, to satisfy this requirement, an apprentice who starts their training on 1 August 2021 must still be receiving training on 31 July 2022.

Apprentice is part time

P35 Where a part-time working pattern is needed, you must agree with the employer and the apprentice the extended apprenticeship duration. You must extend the minimum duration using the following formula:

P35.1 12 x 30 / average weekly hours = new minimum duration in months; or

P35.2 52 x 30 / average weekly hours = new minimum duration in weeks


The main issue where the employer wants differently contracted Apprentices to be delivered over the same period is that the OTJ training requirement may be increased for the Apprentice with reduced normal working hours, if it is acceptable to the Employer and Apprentice that this may require more than the minimum 20% OTJ training delivery then it would still be in line with the funding rules but if the minimum duration is met for each Apprentice  and delivery is front loaded then this may not be an issue.


Julie Maycock

So in the case of a learner who usually works 27 hours a week, the minimum period for training must be 57.77 weeks even though the employer has requested 53 weeks in line with full time employees? 

Martin West

Apprentices on the same Apprenticeship both full time and part time will have the same minimum OTJ training hours, but the minimum duration of the practical period must be extended for those who are part time.

The practical period will consist of time undertaking OTJ training and time reinforcing this training with the employer but the overall time (practical period) and this will be the same for both full time and part time employees.

In your example the practical period is extended for the part time Apprentice, but the OTJ hours can be delivered during the same 53 weeks as for the full time Apprentice who will reinforce their training with the employer during the 53 weeks, but the part time Apprentice will reinforce their training over 57.77 weeks in line with the minimum duration but in both cases the total hours for delivery and reinforcement will be the same.

The actual delivery by the training provider would be the same it is only that the minimum duration of the practical period that must be longer for the part time Apprentice.

Hope that makes sense