LABOUR HAS BRANDED THE EARLY YEARS APPRENTICESHIP SCHEME A FAILURE, AFTER JUST 23 APPRENTICES WERE SUCCESSFUL IN APPLYING FOR THE FUNDING.

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The Department for Education had guaranteed funding for 1,000 bursaries worth up to £1,500 with a further £300 available for more training.

Figures obtained by Labour through a Freedom of Information request reveal that out of a total of 48 applicants, just 23 were successful.

Last November, the DfE doubled the funding to £3,000 for the first 200 successful candidates, suggesting that interest in the scheme had been lower than anticipated.

Now Labour’s figures reveal that between September and November last year just ten people applied for the apprenticeship scheme.

The scheme, run by the National College for Teaching and Leadership, is intended to support the expansion of places for disadvantaged two-year-olds.

Apprentices were required to have a Grade C in maths and English at GCSE.

They would also need to be enrolled on the Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Children and Young People’s Workforce to be eligible, which will be replaced in September by the new Early Years Educator qualification.

Nursery owners have already raised concerns that stricter entry requirements for Early Years Educator qualifications, which will also require apprenticeship applicants to hold a minimum of grade C in maths and English, could lead to a crisis in workforce recruitment. Read full article…

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