South Tyneside Council have created a fund to support local businesses in the growth of their work forces.
A new £35k scholarship fund will support firms looking to hire apprentices, helping local businesses with the associated training and assessment costs.
The council has allocated £35k to the fund after finding an underspend in its apprenticeship levy.
Cllr John Anglin, lead member for regeneration and economy, said: “We’re committed to supporting apprenticeships and developing a skilled workforce. Skills are vital for unlocking productivity and driving economic growth.
“As a levy-paying employer we can support local businesses by transferring a proportion of our unused levy funds to help them recruit and train apprentices or upskill their staff.”
The apprenticeship levy, which is paid by large employers with an annual payroll bill of more than £3million, was introduced in 2017 to help deliver apprenticeships.
The Education and Skills Funding Agency has published guidelines for the transfer of levy funds, which can only be used to support the learning and assessment of apprentices and can’t be used to pay wages.
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