GMLPF Health and Social Care Forum update

The GMLPF Health and Social Care Forum met last week where Ian Lomas, GMLPF CEO, gave an update on:

  • apprenticeship starts in the sector
  • plans by the LCR local authorities to boost apprenticeship starts in the sector through the use of their Levy
  • the potential impact of new flexibilities for funding of learning within the AEB programme upon apprenticeships.
Apprenticeship starts

Overall, there were some 6,040 apprenticeship starts in the first two quarters of 2017/18. If replicated over the remaining two quarters, total apprenticeship starts in the LCR during 2017/18 will be approximately a 1/3 less than in the preceding year.

Looking at Tier 1 SSA data there were some 5,280 starts in the health, public service and care sector in 2016/17, whereas in the first two quarters of this current 2017/18 year there were only 1,580. If this figure is replicated in the remaining two quarters it is possible that the total number of starts in this area would be some 40% down on last year. This confirms intelligence from providers in the sector.

LCR Local Authority Plans for Growing Apprenticeship Starts in the Sector

The LCR Combined Authority and 6 local authorities held an initial workshop in early July to explore the skills needs of the social care sector, to discuss falling apprenticeship starts in the area and how they might promote apprenticeships more, and boost draw down of the Levy to boost the number of Starts. The workshop included a presentation from Skills for Care. Ian Lomas. GMLPF CEO attended the workshop. A key action is to broker input by the LCR CA and Skills for Care into the next meeting of the Health and Social Care Forum.


There are new freedoms and flexibilities within the AEB programme for 2018/19 including the provision of fully funded learning for employees who earn less than £15,736.50 per annum. This pilot funding has the potential to displace other forms of work based learning that require a degree of co-investment from employers, including apprenticeships, in sectors where wages are below the local average salary. We discussed the potential impact of AEB fully funding learning for those in employment in the Social Care and Early Years sectors and how it might impact upon apprenticeship starts. 

Future meetings of GMLPF Health & Social Care Forum

Thursday 25.10.18 – 2-4pm

Thursday 31.01.19 – 2-4pm

Thursday 25.04.19 – 2-4pm

Thursday 27.07.19 – 2-4pm

Thursday 31.10.19 – 2-4pm

All meetings will be held at NWCS