Funding Initiative for Level 2 Adult Social Care Certificate Training

The government is implementing a financial support system for Adult Social Care (ASC) providers to help offset the costs related to government-approved quality training for social care workers.

Financial Support Overview

In the summer of 2024, details regarding the total monetary allocation for this initiative will be announced. The plan is to earmark more than £50 million to assist up to 37,000 care professionals in completing the new Level 2 Adult Social Care Certificate by March 2025.

This initiative represents an overarching commitment to education within the sector, and various additional educational programs will be included in the funding framework. A list of eligible training and qualifications is provided in Appendix A.

Eligibility Criteria

Those eligible for this funding should be part of the non-regulated adult social care workforce in England, including assistant managers, Care Quality Commission-registered staff, and agency workers. Requirements for employers include:

  • Provision of adult social care services.
  • Direct employment of care staff in England.
  • Completion of updates to the Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS).

Further information on eligibility, including the definition of ‘care staff,’ can be found in the provided ‘Glossary of terms’. Please note that this funding does not cover regulated staff such as registered nurses, who have separate revalidation funding options.

Personal assistants within the ASC workforce may be eligible for funding if their employers meet the ASC-WDS standards. Otherwise, they may apply for training funds through the Skills for Care’s Individual Employer Funding.

Allocation of Funds

Employers can seek reimbursement for any approved training and qualifications outlined in Appendix A. Admission criteria for these courses are determined by the respective awarding bodies and are not covered in this document. Predefinite reimbursement rates specified in Appendix A are subject to change without affecting ongoing training at the time of adjustments. Please note that funding does not cover repeat courses.

Level 2 Adult Social Care Certificate

The newly designed Level 2 Certificate builds upon the existing Care Certificate standards, with an aim to professionalize the vocation of care work. The initiative’s goal is to provide a well-respected qualification to skilled caregivers, enhancing the professionalism of the role.

Eligible roles for this qualification include:

  • Activity coordinators
  • Care workers
  • Personal care assistants
  • Rehabilitation specialists
  • Shared lives carers
  • Advocates

All applicants must be of 19 years or older and employed by organizations that fulfill the required conditions.

Access and Management of Funding

Beginning in the summer of 2024, an online platform will enable ASC employers to apply for educational expense reimbursements as outlined in Appendix A. Employers will need to have an account verified against the ASC-WDS to submit claims, with evidence of payment and completion for each claim. Guidelines on the entire process will be updated and made available in due course.

Availability and Limitations

Funds are available for training that meets specific criteria conducted in the fiscal year from 1 April 2024 to 31 March 2025, with claims honoured until 31 March 2027. Employers have a financial cap of £4.5 million for reimbursement in the fiscal year 2024-2025, and the fund is finite — once depleted, updates will be provided to the sector.

This announcement is designed to clarify the scope and process of the Care Skills Funding before its effective date, ensuring ASC providers can prepare to make the most of this opportunity.

Glossary of Terms

Adult Social Care Services

  • Services provided include, but are not limited to:
    • Adult Residential: This encompasses care homes (with or without nursing care), sheltered housing, and other forms of adult residential care services.
    • Adult Day: Covers day care and day services, along with other adult day care services.
    • Adult Domiciliary: Includes domestic services/home help, domiciliary care services, extra care housing, live-in care, supported living services, and other adult domiciliary care services.
    • Adult Community Care: Comprises carers support, community support and outreach, disability adaptations or assistive technology services, information and advice services, occupational or employment-related services, Shared Lives, short breaks or respite care, and social work or care management.

Adult Social Care Workforce Data Set (ASC-WDS)

  • A free online data collection service operated by Skills for Care (SfC), detailing the adult social care workforce in England. It facilitates access to the Workforce Development Fund.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

  • Engaging in learning activities to develop and enhance professional skills.

Care Quality Commission (CQC)

  • The independent regulator of health and social care in England, ensuring appropriate standards of care.

Care Staff

  • Direct care roles including advice guidance, advocacy, care workers, community support, outreach work, employment support, nursing assistants, senior care workers, and technicians.
  • Managerial roles encompass first line managers, other management roles, registered managers, and supervisors within the care environment.
  • Regulated profession roles are those requiring registration before practice, such as allied health professionals, nursing associates, occupational therapists, registered nurses, safeguarding officers, and social workers.

Regulated Health Professionals (RHPs)

  • Professionals who are legally obligated to register with a regulatory body to practice their profession.

Skills for Care

  • Acts as the strategic workforce development and planning body for adult social care in England

Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)

  • A statutory regulator for 15 health and care professions in the UK, ensuring standards for training, professional skills, behaviour, and health.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)

  • The UK regulator for nursing and midwifery professions, ensuring standards for education, training, conduct, and performance.

Workforce Development Fund (WDF)

  • Funding provided by the Department of Health and Social Care, managed by Skills for Care, to bolster the provision of high-quality care.

This glossary serves to clarify terminology used in the context of Adult Social Care services and funding, providing stakeholders with a comprehensive understanding of sector-specific terms.

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