The federation said that it was disappointed that despite the Covid-19 disruption the government was pressing ahead with its controversial plans to withdraw apprenticeship frameworks from 31 July.
“With the Level 3 apprenticeship we have an alternative, but there is no [print-specific] alternative to Level 2,” explained managing director of training Karly Lattimore.
“There was a real opportunity to support the sector by at least postponing it, but no.”
This means that despite the current trading difficulties, firms planning to recruit an apprentice or upskill existing members of their team will need to register for the existing programme before 31 July.
The federation commented: “We understand that some businesses will not be in a position to do this and that businesses will have learning and development needs [beyond that date]. So, we have been looking into alternative apprenticeships which will allow an apprentice to gain the key knowledge, skills and behaviours required at Level 2 in the print industry.”
From the beginning of August it will introduce the Level 2 Lean Manufacturing Operative Apprenticeship Standard.
“Whilst this apprenticeship standard is not a print-specific apprenticeship, the transferable knowledge, skills and behaviours apply to the manufacturing industry and our team are excited about the added value we will be able to offer through delivery of this standard,” the BPIF stated.