What is an Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeships refer to on-the-job training leading to nationally recognised qualifications, developed by industry. It is a great chance for learners to ‘earn while they learn’. An apprenticeship offers the opportunity to gain on the job training, a recognised qualification and the opportunity to earn whilst increasing future career opportunities.

Apprenticeship Frameworks

The Academy offers intermediate and advanced apprenticeships which are suitable for those interested in working with children. The framework provides training to support the development of a highly qualified well skilled workforce within the childcare sector and ensures that children accessing services in England gain the best possible care and support.

Benefit to the Apprentice

Apprenticeship programmes provide a structured paid national training route within the workplace, which is supported with on-going professional development. You will have the opportunity to undertake a ‘portfolio’ of skills and qualifications that will allow you to progress within your work environment and/or progress to both further and higher education, if you wish to.

Teaching Methods

There is a good balance of on the job, classroom based and e-learning. Our tutors provide support through a range of activities in the classroom that will equip you with the knowledge to achieve the qualification units. Delivery of teaching is designed to support all learning styles and provide an active learning environment. You will also receive regular tutorial time to support your individual needs and provide the support required to ensure successful completion of the framework.

What is the role of The Academy?

The Academy will be responsible for delivering the ‘off-the-job’ training. When you begin your apprenticeship, you will be appointed an assessor who will work with you and support you during your training. The Academy will also work in partnership with your employer to update them on your progress.

Can The Academy help me to find employment?

The Academy works with local employers to source suitable positions. Opportunities are advertised on our Children’s Trust and the National Apprenticeship Vacancy Matching websites.

Will I be entitled to holidays?

Holidays will need to be agreed with your employer and are not usually permitted during term-time.

Who is The Academy?

We are a department within Central Bedfordshire Council that has responsibility for ensuring the quality and sufficiency of childcare through staff recruitment, development and career support primarily in the early years sector.

What apprenticeships are available?

There are over 250 different types of Apprenticeships available in the UK, offering over 1,400 job roles within a variety of industry sectors ranging from Agriculture and Horticulture to Childcare, Retail and Commercial Enterprise.

Apprenticeships generally fall into one of three categories:

Intermediate Level Apprenticeships:
Apprentices work towards work-based learning qualifications such as a Level 2 Competence Qualification, Functional Skills and, in most cases, a relevant knowledge-based qualification.

Advanced Level Apprenticeships:
Apprentices work towards work-based learning such as a Level 3 Competence Qualification, Functional Skills and, in most cases, a relevant knowledge based qualification.

Higher Apprenticeships:
Apprentices work towards work-based learning qualifications such as a Level 4 Competence Qualification, Functional Skills and, in some cases, a knowledge-based qualification such as a Foundation Degree.

What will The Academy Apprenticeship programme involve?
  • 30 hours per week paid employment
  • Completion of a CACHE qualification (QCF)
  • Functional Skills or GCSE – English, maths and ICT (as applicable)
  • A module on Employee rights and responsibilities.
How long will it take to complete the Apprenticeship?

The length of time to complete your apprenticeship will depend on the programme you are doing.

Intermediate (Level 2) apprenticeships take between 12 and 15 months and advanced (Level 3) take between 18 and 24 months to complete


As an apprentice you are expected to attend all group sessions and take part in work based assessments. You are also required to demonstrate proof of competence through your own work whilst on the programme. Methods of assessment used by the tutors and assessor are assignments, case studies, observations, witness testimonies, reflective accounts and some work products.

You will need to build a portfolio, which is a great way of being able to record how you have put your learning into practice in your job.

Will I have to be employed?

Yes, you will have to be employed and have a Contract of Employment for a minimum of 30 hours per week, sometimes term time only.

How much will I get paid?

The amount you get paid will depend on your employer and sometimes the level of apprenticeship you complete. Information about apprenticeship wage rates can be found here.

Wage rates should appear on the job advertisement and will include payment for your contracted hours of work and any training that falls under the apprenticeship learning programme - this equates to at least 20% of your employment hours.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements may vary according to your employer however,if you do not have GCSEs or functional skills in maths, English and ICT already please see the requirements below.

If you wish to complete a Level 2 programme you will be expected to achieve functional skills at level 1 by the end of your programme.

Level 3 apprentices are expected to achieve level 2 functional skills by the end of the programme.