Darren Hands

Change of Employer

Created

I'm looking for some clarity please.

If a learner is made redundant - I understand the old rules and now the new rules about BiLs etc up to 12 weeks; If they leave their employer voluntarily or are sacked, my understanding is that they are treated as unemployed (they have not been made redundant), and therefore are withdrawn on the ILR.

My query is, how should they be treated if they leave (voluntarily or sacked) from Employer "A" on a Friday but start at Employer "B" on the following Monday.  In theory, they are unemployed over the weekend.  I'm not sure the ESFA's systems are clever enough to recognise the weekend (which may not necessarily be normal working days), so should they be withdrawn as at the Friday and restarted on the Monday?  I suppose the same question applies to say a gap of a week between Employer A and Employer B.

TIA

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Martin West

See the funding rules P313 on for ‘Where there is no break in employment or a break of 30 days or less’ and ‘Where there is a break in employment of more than 30 days’

HTH

Darren Hands

Thanks Martin. 

Seems to contradict P74.3.1 about being unemployed and therefore ineligible - (ignoring for this query those who become sole traders etc). Maybe it should state in P74.3.1, if they are made unemployed but find a new employer go to P313. Think it would have also been helpful if they had included what is shown in P313 within P274 regarding "Change of Circumstances" - which surely a change of employer albeit not through redundancy this would be.

(Edited)

Martin West

I think you are reading it out of context as this section is about DAS funding but yes if they stay as unemployed they would have to be withdrawn.

Martin West

The rules in general were the same in previous year’s for change of employer, the changes this year to redundancy rules applies irrespective to the start date but the new rules apply to those who start after 1/8/2022.

 

Melanie Aspinall

Martin West if I have an apprentice whose start date is 07/07/2021 and they change employer in August 2022, do I have to follow the old rules whereby if the change is more than 30 days in duration I have to withdraw the apprentice and restart or can I put that learner on a BIL? 

TIA

Martin West

Although this is a new rule it is not included in the exceptions below:

P13 These rules will apply to all apprenticeship programmes starting on or after 1 August 2022, with the following exceptions:

P13.1 The redundancy rules (detailed in paragraphs P274 to P275). These rules will apply irrespective of the apprentice’s start date and will include existing learners who started their apprenticeship programme in previous funding years.

P13.2 The rules on changing to a new version of a standard (detailed in paragraphs P285 to P298), which describe the rules for when an existing apprentice wishes to move to a new version of the same standard. These rules will apply irrespective of the apprentice’s start date and will include existing learners who started their apprenticeship programme in previous funding years.

P13.3 The rules on English and maths (detailed in paragraphs P134.1 and P138.1). These rules will apply irrespective of the apprentice’s start date and will include existing learners who started their apprenticeship programme in previous funding years.

However, I believe the following is intended to apply irrespective of the start date but this has not been confirmed by the ESFA.

Where there is a break in employment of more than 30 days

P316 The original employer must stop payments through their apprenticeship service account, using a stop date that corresponds with the date the apprentice changed employer. This includes where the apprenticeship is funded by a transfer. They can also stop co-investment, as appropriate.

P317 The main provider must:

P317.1 Record the apprentice as on a break a learning on the ILR after 30 days;

P317.2 Ensure that a change of employer is declared on the apprenticeship service against the existing record to ensure that the same course is carried over to the new record one the apprentice restarts with their new employer;

P317.3 Withdraw the apprentice from the programme if they have not re-started with a new employer after 12 weeks.

HTH

Christine Gregory

Hi, I asked ESFA for clarification on this rule and received the following reply:

"Thank you for contacting the Apprenticeship Service Support Team, my name is Tori-Leigh. I apologise for the delay in response, our service has been very busy. I understand from your email that you would like to know if the new funding rule regarding the 12 weeks for a break in learning will apply to all apprentices, or if it is just the apprentices with a start date from 1st August 2022.
 
Your query was passed over to ourselves from our Service Desk team on CI-0152168.
 
The 22/23 funding rules only apply to the apprentices who started on or after August 1st 2022. Any apprentice employed earlier than that date will stick to the funding rules that applied on the date they were employed."

I interpret this to mean any apprentices who started before 1st August will need to be withdrawn after a 30 day gap, but what are your thoughts?

Thanks 

Martin West

This would imply that the following new rule also would only apply to new starts in 22/23

P52.1 A break in learning must be used where there is no active learning for 4 weeks or more.

That cannot be correct?

Melanie Aspinall

I asked Simon Ashworth from AELP the same question and he said that this rule regarding change of employer only applied to starts from 1/8/2022.

However, the BIL for inactive learning was in the 21/22 rules, wasn't it?

Martin West

Although the requirement for active learning has always been a rule last year this did not include that a BIL must be used where this was over 4 weeks,

P31.1 The apprentice must be involved in active learning throughout the apprenticeship (see paragraph P44.3).

Melanie Aspinall

I thought P44.3 applied in 21/22 Funding Rules:

P44.3 The apprentice must be involved in active learning throughout the apprenticeship (see paragraph P31.1). Where an individual agrees, with their provider and employer, to take a break of at least 4 weeks from their apprenticeship (with or without a break from work), but plans to return to their apprenticeship in the future, a break in learning must be used (see paragraphs P290 to P293). 

Martin West

How many providers thought that meant and used a BIL to suspend funding after 4 weeks of inactivity, the new rule enforces it as a ‘must’, but it did not before and that was the reason for the change.