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Volume 490: debated on Monday 23 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what consideration he is giving to reviewing the period of time available to a college to find a new placement for an apprentice who loses the job to which the apprenticeship is related. (263479)

When an apprentice is made redundant, the first option that training providers and the National Apprenticeship Service will explore is finding immediate alternative employment. We recognise that the current economic climate can make it even more challenging to find a new employer place. We have agreed new flexibilities to allow apprentices who cannot find immediate alternative employment to move into full-time further education for up to six months while maintaining their existing apprenticeship framework and maintaining their status as an apprentice. The Learning and Skills Council have advised providers of this new flexibility which allows redundant apprentices to maintain their framework for an extended period while they and their provider seek a new employer.