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Skills for Security

Coronavirus: Guaranteed funding needed for security training providers

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Calls have been made for the government to protect funding for independent training providers during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

Apprentice trainers to the fire and security sector, Skills for Security, follows guidance released by the Department for Education (DfE) which states that policy “does not allow payment for services in advance of delivery”, which will mean that funding for apprenticeships cannot be made until the training has taken place.

Skills for Security, which operates under the British Security Industry Association, believes the omission of support from the DfE for apprenticeships and other skills training is a ‘complete turnaround’ after the Secretary of State guaranteed funding support for mainstream further education provision. The latest guidance excludes any independent training providers who deliver adult education, apprenticeships and other forms of training, although colleges will continue to receive guaranteed funding even though they are technically independent providers.

Skills for Security says there is concern that anyone providing this type of education is in danger of going out of business in the likelihood of a dramatic fall in attendance or the inability for apprentices to attend online training if their firm is providing key worker services and the demand on the apprentices’ time means there are unable to participate with the new online model.

Skills for Security are therefore calling for the Government to consider:

• All independent training provider contracts should be paid on profile whatever the current performance and levy apprenticeships paid based on the prior six months delivery

• If funding is maintained, providers will commit to not furlough staff relating to delivery thus saving the Treasury a significant amount of money.  

• Guarantee the next month’s funding to allow time to sort through the details and how the model might work.

David Scott, Managing Director, Skills for Security, said: “We are incredibly concerned that this omission of financial support will have a dramatic effect on our business as a leading provider of fire and security apprenticeships in our sector. Although we have had a 90% remote access participation for this week’s training, the following week at present is less than 50% and, based on the Government’s statement this will have a serious effect on our finances.

“If providers cease trading or furlough substantial numbers of staff then apprentices, learners and employers who want to continue training will lose their provider and many of these learners will be left with no support.  If we are unable to guarantee funding there is every chance the industry will lose capacity and increase levels of unemployed and a low possibility of upskilling those in the workplace.

“The lack of support from the DfE is not only going to affect our current financial and operational performance, but the long term effects may mean we will not be able to reach our full potential in ensuring the fire and security industry has appropriate number of apprentices trained. Before this impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) the security industry reported a skills shortage of 30,000 engineers needed to service customer requirements. Skills for Security significant expansion in its training resources and provision ensured we can meet the increase in demand for apprenticeship training nationally.”

Two extra dates confirmed for BSIA’s apprenticeship framework breakfast briefings…

800 450 Jack Wynn

The British Security Industry Association (BSIA) has added two extra dates to its ‘Apprenticeship Breakfast Briefings’ series following the success of the first meeting held in Birmingham on December 7. 

Hosted in partnership with Skills for Security, the free-to-attend briefings will be held in January 2017 and plans to discuss the apprenticeship levy in detail; providing advice on how Skills for Security and the BSIA can help employers adapt to these changes due to be funded from April next year. 

Simon Banks, founder of the Apprentices for Fire and Security Programme and one of the featured speakers at the Birmingham event, commented on the success of the meeting: “It was great to see such a fantastic turn out at the briefing, with delegates keen to find out more about the new apprenticeship framework and how they can bring apprentices on board their business.

“Apprenticeships are a fantastic way to build on the skills of the younger generation and pave the way for a positive career, ultimately contributing to the overall success of a business; therefore, it’s vital that employers understand that a service industry without skilled engineers is restricting their business and the entire value chain. These breakfast briefings provide vital information about changes to apprenticeships, how new funds can best be utilised and the wide array of training available to the
industry.”

The dates and venues for the additional briefings are:

  • Tuesday, January 10 2017, 8:30am– 10:30am – The Atrium, UBM, 240 Blackfriars Rd, London SE1 8BF. 
  • Thursday, January 19 2017, 8:30am – 10:30am – The Holiday Inn Runcorn, Wood Ln, Runcorn WA7 3HA.

Register for one of the 2017 briefings here 

BSIA to host breakfast briefings on new apprenticeship framework…

800 450 Jack Wynn

A series of free-to-attend and informative breakfast briefings hosted by the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) are set to bring crucial information to employers in the fire and security sectors ahead of important changes to the way apprenticeships are funded in England and Wales. 

In partnership with Skills for Security, the first is scheduled to be held in Birmingham, with two further briefings are planned for early January 2017 in London and the north of England.   

Peter Sherry, interim director general at Skills for Security said: “At the end of 2016, the government’s funding framework for apprenticeships is due to change, with the introduction of a new ‘trailblazer’ operating model and apprenticeship levy. With many employers within the security and fire sectors set to be affected by these changes, the BSIA and Skills for Security wanted to provide valuable advice to help them understand how these changes will affect their business.” 

David Wilkinson, director of Technical Services at the BSIA, and Simon Banks, group managing director at CSL Dualcom and founder of the Apprentices for Fire and Security programme will join Sherry as speakers for the briefings; with topics under discussion include an introduction to the apprenticeship levy, how the BSIA and Skills for Security can help employers adapt to these changes, an explanation of what’s changing, and insight into the value of apprenticeships and the benefits for business.  

Delegates will have the opportunity to ask questions and seek advice from the expert panel on issues specifically relevant to their business.    

Registration to attend the event is free-of-charge and can be completed here

To download a full programme, click here