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01 Mar 2021

Careers in care

Celebrating Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2021

This week (1-5 March) is Scottish Apprenticeship Week, which is an opportunity to share the value apprenticeships can bring to individuals, employers and people who use social care and health services. The theme of this year’s week is Business Backing Talent, to showcase the great things that happen when employers back talent through apprenticeships.

During this week we’ll share some examples on our website and social media of great apprenticeship practice and opportunities, as well as highlight the information and support available. Follow the week on social media using the hashtag #ScotAppWeek21.

Apprenticeships allow people to work while training and help workers gain qualifications that reflect the skills and knowledge they need. The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) manages the modern apprenticeship frameworks for social services and healthcare (SSH) and social services (children and young people) (CYP) as part of our role with Skills for Care and Development. We work with employers to develop qualification structures and apprenticeship frameworks, including modern, technical and professional levels.

Who are apprentices in social services?

  • In school, our foundation apprenticeships are popular with senior phase students.
  • In the workplace, apprentices are new or existing employees. Over 40% of all new apprentices in Scotland in 2019-2020 had already been with their employers for 13 months or more.
  • In work, approximately 30% of new social service SVQ candidates used the apprenticeship route in 2019-20.
  • Apprentices are from a mix of age groups including young people and people over 25. Over half of apprentice starts were 25 or older in 2019-20.

Why are apprenticeships important?

Apprenticeships can strengthen recruitment and career pathways throughout social services and bring financial contributions for learning and assessment. There is also the opportunity to receive enhanced funding to enable better service to care experienced and disabled people up to the age of 29.

Apprenticeships support individuals to gain core skills (numeracy/IT) or career skills and they also offer an opportunity to meet SSSC registration requirements. Within organisations, they offer an opportunity to develop workplace mentors and we have a dedicated Modern Apprenticeships resource to help you with this.

Employers in social services can access information and support on the employers section of the website. The website also has information about initiatives to support employers during COVID-19, including the Apprenticeship Employer Grant (available until 25 March 2021), the adopt an apprentice scheme and pathways to apprenticeships.

Financial contributions for learning and assessment

Here are the current contribution rates for social service apprenticeship frameworks. Enhanced contributions (at the 16-19 full rate) may be available to apprenticeship centres to support them to improve learning experiences for disabled apprentices and apprentices with care experience up to the age of 29 years.

  16-19 20-24 25+
Social Services and Healthcare
SCQF level 6
£2,700 £1,450 £1,000
Social Services and Healthcare
SCQF level 7
£4,200 £2,700 £1,700
Social Services and Healthcare
SCQF level 9
£3,300 £1,750 £1,500
Social Services (Children and Young People)
SCQF level 7
£5,500 £2,700 £1,700
Social Services (Children and Young People)
SCQF level 9
£3,800 £1,750 £1,500
Care Services Leadership and Management
SCQF level 10
£3,300 £1,750 £1,500

Resources to support apprenticeships

We have more information about the SSSC’s role on the apprenticeships page of our website.

For more information about the role of mentoring an apprenticeship, you can use our Modern Apprenticeships resource.

You can see apprenticeships within career pathways on

To advertise or search for an apprenticeship vacancy visit

For more information about the role of Skills Development Scotland visit

If you have any questions about apprenticeships please use the web form on our Contact us page

Contact information

Lorraine Wakefield
Communications Manager
Scottish Social Services Council