Skills Funding Agency (SFA) 19+ funding and qualifications

The SFA has been and continues to make extensive reforms on behalf of the Government, to 19+ funding and skills. These reforms include changes to: apprenticeships, the main Adult Learner Responsive budget, now called the Adult Education Budget (AEB), and the Advanced Learner Loans offer.

We have included information on each of the areas the SFA funds further down the page, with links to relevant sites to assist you. Apprenticeships are also funded by the SFA, but have their own section on the website.

Legal entitlement – in 2016-17, learners aged 19-23, who do not yet have a full level 2 or 3 qualification, will be eligible to be funded to gain a qualification at those levels. The SFA has published a list of qualifications, including English and maths, which they are able to fund for this type of learner. These qualification are called Legal Entitlements and can be found on the following webpage with more detailed information about the legal entitlement.

Legal Entitlement >>

Local flexibilities 

The 19 to 23 legal entitlement explained above is expected to only be a small part of the delivery of the total Adult Education Budget (AEB). Qualifications at Level 2 (and below), not eligible for the legal entitlement will be eligible for funding through the Local Offer. The Local Offer is expected to be the majority of the delivery of the Adult Education Budget and from 2017-2018, the SFA will begin to devolve these funds down to a local level. When that occurs, providers will work to develop Delivery Outcome Agreements with their Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) or Combined Authorities (whichever body becomes responsible for the devolved funds) for delivery of L2 and below qualifications that meet local priorities for skills needs. The SFA have published information on qualification Eligibility Principles for the Local Flexibility offer and that information can be found on the web-link below.

Qualification Eligibility Principles >>

Advanced Learning Loans 

For learners that already have a first full Level 2 or level 3, any further learning that isn’t an apprenticeship, at Level 3 and above, will be funded by a FE Adult Advanced Learning Loan.

The following qualifications may be funded by an Advanced Learning Loan;

Certificates at levels 3, 4, 5 and 6

6 Diplomas at levels 3, 4, 5 and 6

6 A-levels (including AS, A2 and full A-levels)

Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) Access to HE Diplomas

City & Guilds has a dedicated page to support education and training providers and individual learners with more detailed information about Advanced Learning Loans, including a list of our qualifications that are approved for delivery with an FE loan.

City & Guilds advanced learning loans >>

The SFA has published a full list of qualifications that are eligible for loans.

FE Advanced Learner Loans >>

The SFA have also published Funding Rules and provider information about accessing a loan facility specifically for Advanced Learner Loans for 2016/17.

Advanced Learning Loans Guidance and Funding Information >>

Offender Learning and Skills Service (OLASS)

The Skills Funding Agency manages the OLASS service to support rehabilitation of offenders via learning and skills. This in turn enables offenders to gain the skills and qualifications they need to get sustainable employment and have a positive role in society. More Information about OLASS, including funding and performance management arrangements can be found on the link below. However, please note the recent Dame Sally Coates report on Offender Learning means there may be changes to arrangements for OLASS in the future.

OLASS Funding Rules and Guidance >>

Workshop offer

City & Guilds run half day Strategic Funding and Planning CPD Master Classes for groups of providers, to support you with the post 16 reforms. These workshops cover all the funding reforms in depth, including the new apprenticeship arrangements.

View City & Guilds CPD Event Workshops >>

We can also offer the workshops more locally within a region or area, if your organisation is willing to host the event for a local network or group of providers. Hosting organisations receiving two free places at the workshop. Workshops must have a minimum of 12 delegates to be viable.

For more information, please contact Bryony Kingsland: