Apprenticeships, Learning Support Funding (LSF) and the Do-IT Neurodiversity Apprenticeship Profiler

Every apprenticeship provider and employers wants to do their best for all their apprentices. Understanding the needs of each learner from Day 1 can make the real difference in gaining confidence and the ability to thrive.

Neurodivergent learners may need specific adjustments in place from the beginning. Often these are low tech and low cost but what can make a real difference is the understanding of the trainers about that individual from the beginning.

Learning Support Funding (LSF) can help you to do so

If you are an apprenticeship provider, did you know you can claim Learning Support Funding (LSF) to help you cover the additional costs of supporting learners who have learning difficulties, neurodivergent conditions or disabilities? Importantly this includes those who have not been previously diagnosed.

Latest guidance on funding rules have been published for 2023-2024. The specific rules are found here.

There is also has been a greater focus on SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities), 

How is your organisation support your neurodivergent learners?

Providers are now required to “undertake a screening exercise for learning support.” (DfE, 2023)

Initial assessment of potential learning difficulties and the impact these may have on the learner’s chances of success is more and more becoming part of the expected process for providers.

Not everyone has a diagnosis or knows they have a neurodivergent trait or learning difference

We can assume that apprentices will tell you and know they have support needs. We know that many apprentices will have been missed, misdiagnosed and misunderstood. These apprentices may be at greater risk of ‘fall out’ too.

The Department for Education (DfE) policy guidelines highlight the fact that not everyone has a diagnosis or will know….

“In relation to paragraphs 26 to 27, this can include an apprentice who has not previously had a learning difficulty or disability identified, but in relation to whom the provider has identified a learning difficulty or disability (as defined in Section 15ZA(6) of the Education Act 1996) that would directly affect the apprentice’s ability to complete their apprenticeship.”  (DfE, 2023)

LSF and Earnings Adjustment Statement (EAS)

LSF gives you extra funding each month to support a learner with identified needs. You can also use the Earnings Adjustment Statement (EAS) to claim funding that you cannot report in the Individual Learning Report (ILR) for larger, one-off support costs.

Not all providers have confidence in claiming the funding. This can mean they can miss out on the resources to help cover the costs of ant additional support that can be in place for learners. Support can make a huge difference to outcomes for the learner not only during the time as an apprentice but can have a long term impact.

Organisations can claim £150 per month per learner (or more) if you can demonstrate that the learner needs more intensive support. The funding is used for adjustments and this include training, and providing assistive technology.

Getting LSF can help your organisation to deliver personalised support from day 1 to increase retention rates and create better outcomes

How can you do this?

  1. Identify the learners who need learning support and assess their needs. The Do-IT Neurodiversity Apprentice platform has been designed for you. It allows your organisation to assess each learner’s individual’s needs at scale. The platform delivers personalised reports and can map your learner’s journey. This means you can deliver support and adjustments from day 1. It provides information to the employer and trainer to upskill them too.
  2. Plan and deliver the learning support that meets the needs of each learner.
  3. Record and evidence the learning support that you provide. You need to keep a record of the learner’s needs, the support plan, the delivery and the outcomes. Review and evidencing the plan has been enacted is very important.
  4. Claim the learning support funding through the ILR. You also need to keep all the records and evidence for audit purposes.All providers on the register of apprenticeship training providers (RoATP) should be constantly evaluating their support infrastructure to ensure they provide outstanding ways of meeting their learners’ needs.

What can you also do ….

 

ReferenceApprenticeship funding rules 2023-2024

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