Apprentices can earn while they learn and do not need to worry about paying back student loans.
The National Minimum Wage for apprentices between 16-18 (or anyone in their first year of an apprenticeship) is £4.15 per hour (will be £4.81 per hour from 1st April 2022). All other apprentices are entitled to the standard National Minimum Wage for their age, however many employers pay over this.
Level 2 apprenticeships average between £180 and £200 per week, and Level 3 and 4 apprenticeships usually pay more, with employers often increasing wages in line with skills, experience and qualifications.
Gaining relevant skills, experience, qualifications and business etiquette in an industry setting is a great way to impress future employers. While there is no complete guarantee of a job after an apprenticeship, the figures are extremely encouraging. Higher apprentices could earn £150,000 more on average over their lifetime compared to those with Level 3 vocational qualifications.
Those who start on Level 2 programmes often progress onto Level 3 higher and Level 4 advanced apprenticeships. Your son or daughter could start on the apprenticeship route as a school leaver, and learn to be a highly qualified and experienced professional within a few years.
Apprenticeship training can take place at a local college one day a week or at the employer’s business. The training provides students with relevant competences for their chosen industry or profession. Those students without GCSE English and Maths also have the opportunity to study literacy, numeracy and IT skills.
Apprentices work alongside experienced staff, gaining job-specific skills, nationally recognised qualifications and a wage. Apprentices also take part in work-related study to towards their qualification.
Intermediate – Level 2 equivalent to five GCSE passes
Advanced – Level 3 equivalent to two A Levels
Higher – Can lead to NVQ Level 4 (equivalent to a Foundation Degree)
Apprenticeships offer a wealth of different qualifications in all job and career sectors. Apprenticeships offer NVQs, often along with BTEC qualifications. Apprenticeships are a minimum of 12 month duration dependent on the level, subject and employer.
- 86% of employers said apprenticeships helped them develop skills relevant to their organisation
- 78% of employers said apprenticeships helped them improve productivity
- 74% of employers said apprenticeships helped them improve the quality of their product or service
In 2019/20, there were 719,000 people participating in an apprenticeship in England, with 322,500 apprenticeship starts and 146,900 apprenticeship achievements.