Kickstart: New government scheme offering job placements for unemployed 16 – 24 year olds
You may have seen the government’s recent announcement of its Kickstart scheme to provide funding to employers to create 6 month job placements for unemployed 16 – 24 year olds.
We acknowledge that our members' organisations are in varying states of distress and disruption at present, with many closed, working at significantly reduced levels, or going through redundancy processes with their workforce. We also know that many of our members' organisations have either reopened or are making reopening plans.
As we have had several enquiries about the Kickstart scheme, we wanted to let all members know about it, in case you are able to take advantage of it.
We are currently working on the Kickstart scheme alongside Creative & Cultural Skills who are exploring options to become a Representative Organisation. The purpose of this role is to aid single employers that cannot provide 30 placements (of which we know many theatre business won’t be able to).
The challenge at this time for young people at the start of their careers, especially those from low socio-economic status, is enormous. It would be hugely positive if through Kickstart we could support both your organisation and young people's routes into work, in spite of all the challenges our sector and workforce is currently facing.
If you are interested in taking part in the scheme via CC Skills, please contact them by Thursday 1 October. Conversations are happening quickly around this and we want to make sure CC Skills are responding with UK Theatre and SOLT members in mind.
Frequently asked questions from our sector about the government's Kickstart Scheme:
We are a small business and cannot offer the minimum 30 placements needed. Is there another way we can get involved?
- We understand there has been some confusion around the size of employers who can participate in Kickstart. The programme can support anyone who is able to directly employ (issue a contract of employment) to a kickstart employee. The size of your company is irrelevant. Any employer who wishes to apply to Kickstart direct, without the support of a Representative Organisation like Creative & Cultural Skills will need to show they can create a minimum of 30 Kickstart placements by Dec 2021.
- We know it’s highly unlikely that many employers in our sector can meet this requirement, therefore Creative & Cultural Skills is offering to help.
Is Funding Available?
- Funding covers 100% of the wage costs of a 6-month placement consisting of 25 hours a week at the relevant national minimum wage. Placements can start any time between November 2020 and December 2021.
What other support is available?
- In addition to the wage costs, employers will also be able to access £1500 for each Kickstart placement they create to provide wraparound employability support to each Kickstart employee, such as careers advice, CV writing and general training in employability. Where employers are unable to provide this support direct, Creative & Cultural Skills will help connect you to local sector-specific organisations who are well placed to provide this.
How will CC Skills' help?
- CC Skills' collective aim is to ringfence much needed funding for our sector to create quality Kickstart job placements, whilst minimising the associated bureaucracy on behalf of Theatre employers of all sizes.
My organisation is in Scotland, can we apply?
- The bid will cover England, Scotland and Wales and will be sector wide, and is being supported by a wide range of partners including Arts Council England, Arts Council Wales, Federation of Scottish Theatres, the Museums Association, UK Music and many more.
(published 24 September 2020)
A Guide to Entry Routes
UK Theatre and SOLT have worked with Creative & Cultural Skills to create information sheets to introduce theatre employers to the learning and skills landscape, which we appreciate can sometimes feel like a confusing area of work.
- Understanding Entry Routes - know what sort of placements and qualifications theatres can use. If you are thinking about or would like to engage anyone through these entry routes, please read our detailed booklet or contact Creative & Cultural Skills.
- Key Players - a list of key players in education and what they are responsible for
- Common Terminology - definitions of some of the most common language used in skills and education
- Progression Pathways: Levels of Learning - understand what level of difficulty qualifications are
These guides apply to England only. For more information on Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales, please contact Creative & Cultural Skills at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Information correct at time of publishing (March 27 2019)
For guidance on hosting an apprentice, please visit the National College Creative Industries website. You can download an employer support pack, as well as information for both apprentice levy paying organisations and non-levy paying organisations.
We have worked with CC Skills on creating this Guide on better understanding the Levy. The Government has changed the way apprenticeships are funded in England, which includes the introduction of an employer levy. The levy is part of the Government’s apprenticeship reforms in England, which work to put employers in the driving seat and give them purchasing power.
The Theatre Workforce Review identified that there are several skills gaps in the talent pipeline to the theatre industry, and that we currently are not representative of the population as a whole.
UK Theatre and SOLT welcome the prioritisation of technical qualifications within the Sainsbury Review and the subsequent technical education reforms. We want to ensure that these new qualifications help fill the talent gap, whilst diversifying our workforce across the country.
We have been engaging with theatre employers, the Department for Education, the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and the Gatsby Charitable Foundation on the ongoing development of T Levels. We have written a paper that collates theatres' thoughts and comments regarding the implementation of T Levels in our industry, and shared it with these stakeholders.