With the continually rising price of tuition fees at Universities and the high demand for skilled workers throughout the UK, Apprenticeships are becoming an increasingly popular route for young people.

With the continually rising price of tuition fees at Universities and the high demand for skilled workers throughout the UK, Apprenticeships are becoming an increasingly popular route for young people.

Over 321,400 young people started an apprenticeship between 2020-2021, and as teachers, providing the correct information about how they function is crucial when supporting pupils and students to make a choice that is right for them.

Thankfully, there is plenty of support available for teachers in schools and other learning institutions, helping raise awareness of the benefits of an apprenticeship to students who choose to start apprenticeship training as the next step in their development.

The five key benefits to students who choose an apprenticeship are:

  1. They are employed in a real job learning fundamental skills, with 90% of apprentices staying on either in their place of work or finding other employment after completing an apprenticeship.
  2. They are working towards achieving an approved qualification – there are over 570 apprenticeship standards available.
  3. They are paid at least the relevant national minimum wage though employers often choose to pay more.
  4. They will learn in a variety of ways, from classroom studies to off-the-job training provided by their employer.
  5. They will leave with at least a level 2 qualification in English and maths, improving their employability chances in later life.

Apprenticeship Speakers for Schools

Most training providers will often be able to provide a speaker who will be able to give information on the apprenticeships available in your area. Discussing the minimum requirements needed, as well as answering any questions pupils may have. This can be a helpful way to disseminate the information to all of your students at the same time rather than informing them on a piecemeal basis.   

Inviting previous students to talk come in and talk about their experiences with apprenticeships can also help other pupils make an informed choice about their future. This can be an excellent and affirming experience for the former students as well as an exciting and information-rich experience for the current students from someone closer to being their peer than teachers are. This can help the students to take on board what they are saying and be willing to engage more with the content of their presentation.  

Careers Advice and Guidance

It is a great idea to host a careers event during the school term where invited employers can talk to pupils about experiences in the working environment and any potential opportunities that they have in the pipeline. This will give the students a much greater insight into the world of work and may spark their interest in exploring an industry they never previously considered.

It is important to remember that there is more than one route to success and what looks right for one student simply won’t work for another. With this in mind, try to invite as diverse a cohort of local businesses as possible so that more areas can be touched upon and, hopefully, a broader set of interests can be sparked. 

For many students, it feels like school only values those who are the most academically able and that those who are perhaps less adept at their studies are largely ignored. Hosting a careers event which has a good focus on apprenticeships and employers from outside the white-collar office sector can help to redress that perception somewhat. 

This can help less academically able students understand that there is still a promising future awaiting them, even if they are not achieving the grades of some of their peers and that one size doesn’t necessarily fit all with regard to education, employment and training needs.    

Case Studies and Webinars

The Apprenticeship YouTube Channel has some fantastic videos promoting apprenticeships in key industry sectors such as construction and finance, in addition to other content such as success stories and interviews with current apprentices. This is a valuable resource, and the videos allow visual learners to take in the information they need more quickly. 

Teachers can also sign up for webinars free of charge from a host of providers, where they can keep up to date with developments in the sector.

Student Resources

There are free resources such as Apprenticeship handbooks for students to work through, helping them make an informed choice, as well as Teacher’s handbooks providing details on how to run informative sessions for pupils, as well as helpful information on what an apprenticeship is and what kinds of apprenticeship standards are available.

We also have a page dedicated to reasons to start an apprenticeship which can help to explain some of the benefits that young people can derive from the apprenticeship career route. We explain the different types of apprenticeships which are aimed at disparate levels of academic attainment, ranging from Intermediate to Advanced, Higher and Degree levels.

The Degree level apprenticeships, in particular, are a good thing to draw the attention of your students to. They will do a full apprenticeship and earn an undergraduate degree at the end of it while having accrued relevant skills and experience in their chosen field. This actually puts them ahead of those who only have an undergraduate degree, as they won’t have had the same level of experience and interaction within their field. 

The thing that makes this most attractive is that unlike going down the University route, they won’t have had to pay the ever-increasing tuition fees. This is an excellent route for talented young people who are maybe from lower socioeconomic backgrounds and who wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford this level of education.  

Apprenticeships in Schools

Did you know there are apprenticeship standards now available for roles within schools, such as Teaching Assistant (Level 3) or a postgraduate teaching apprenticeship (level 6)? You may be able to use your school’s levy contributions to fund the up-skilling of current staff or provide opportunities for new employees. 

The government recently released some guidance around apprenticeships for the school workforce which gives detailed information about how your school can develop talent through apprenticeships.

Two young people looking at a laptop

Parents and Teachers