Furloughed apprentices

CoronavirusThis article sits within the Coronavirus section

Employers can keep their apprentices on the organisation’s payroll even if they’re unable to operate or have no work because of coronavirus (COVID-19). This is known as putting them ‘on furlough’.

How the government is supporting you

The government set up the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme that lets your employer claim up a percentage of your monthly wages if you’re furloughed. Until August, they can also claim your National Insurance contributions and the minimum employer pension contributions on your wage.

On 17 December 2020 the Chancellor announced that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was being extended until the end of April 2021.  The level of the grant will mirror levels available under the CJRS in August, so the government will pay 80% of wages up to a cap of £2,500 and employers will pay employer National Insurance Contributions (NICs) and pension contributions only for the hours the employee does not work. 

What your apprentices can do during furlough

We’ve introduced flexibilities to help furloughed apprentices to continue their apprenticeship training, as long as they do not provide services or generate revenue for their employers.

Furloughed apprentices can:

  • continue with their off-the-job training and end-point assessments remotely
  • use digital and distance learning
  • take part in volunteer work

You may agree with your apprentice and training provider to increase the amount of time they spend on off-the-job training. This is to make sure employers have the skills they need for the future and means they can make changes to continue supporting apprenticeships.

When apprentices can train

When apprentices are on furlough (granted a leave of absence), they can agree with their training provider to continue with their apprenticeship training.  If the apprentice cannot continue with their apprenticeship training remotely, they must take a break in learning.


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