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Employers in Cheshire to Receive Funding Boost as part of T-Level Plans

Employers across Cheshire will be able to claim a £1,000 cash boost for every T Level student they host on a high-quality industry placement, as part of a new incentive scheme launched today.

Cheshire College is the only Further Education College in Cheshire selected by the Government to offer T Levels

The new technical qualifications—co-created with over 250 employers including Fujitsu and Amazon—are equivalent to three A Levels, and uniquely combine classroom study with industry placements.

T Levels are a key part of the Government’s reforms to revolutionise skills and technical education, generating the skilled workforce that businesses need for the future, and giving students the experience they need to progress into well-paid jobs, further study, or an apprenticeship.

Industry placements form a key component of T Level courses, with students spending at least 45 days (or 315 hours) with an employer.

They offer local businesses an excellent chance to nurture and build a skilled talent pipeline for the future, while helping to level-up opportunities as we recover from the pandemic.

Students gain vital hands-on experience and invaluable insight of the world of work, setting them up for success in the next steps of their career.

Edward Timpson CBE MP

Welcoming the news, Edward Timpson CBE, MP for Eddisbury, said:

“I was proud to stand on a manifesto which committed us to levelling-up our educational opportunities for young people.

“In a changing world, its vital that we equip our young people with the technical skills necessary to succeed in the 21st century economy, rather than relying solely on traditional academic education. T Levels are a vital part of our offer to young people, and they have my full support.”

Gillian Keegan MP, the Minister for Apprenticeships and Skills, added:

“T Levels are a game changer for young people, providing a fantastic high-quality technical alternative to A levels and helping to produce the skilled talent pipeline of tomorrow as we recover from the pandemic.

“Employers are already recognising the value hosting a T Level industry placement can bring to their business—helping them to build the skilled workforce they need for the future.

“This temporary cash boost will help even more employers to experience the benefits, while also providing young people with invaluable first-hand experience in the workplace.”

The incentive fund is designed to offer support to employers impacted by the pandemic, to ensure they can continue to host placements. Employers will be able to claim for up to 20 students for the available T Level subject areas from 27 May 2021 until July 2022.

The first three T Levels—in Design, Surveying and Planning for Construction; Digital Production, Design and Development; and Education and Childcare—were introduced in September 2020.

A further seven will be available from 2021 in subjects including Healthcare, Science and Onsite Construction, and subjects including Finance, Media, Broadcast and Production and Legal Services will be introduced from 2022 and 2023.

The fund will complement the Employer Support Package already in place, which provides support for employers to deliver high-quality industry placements, through online guidance, case studies and workshops and an invitation to tender will be launched this summer. This package will be continued into the 2021/22 academic year.

Also published today is a new employer guide to help businesses understand how to host an industry placement, including details on what is expected of them during the placement.

This package of support builds on the Government’s work to transform post-16 education so every young adult has a range of opportunities open to them, removing the illusion that a degree is the only path to a good career.

The funding boost comes on top of the £165 million already invested through the capacity and delivery funding in 2018/19 to support further education providers prepare for the delivery of high quality industry placements.

An additional £7 million has also been invested though the employer support pilot fund to work with employers to test ways to support them to offer placements

This is part of the wider investment of nearly £500 million, that includes capital funding to improve the quality of facilities and equipment to be used to deliver T Levels, and investment in the T Level Professional Development (TLPD) offer.