Skip to main content

Adult education budget and 16 to 19 learning programmes

Supply chain and sub-contractor fees policy 2022 to 2023


1.1 Plymouth City Council’s Education Participation and Learning Dept. works with a range of sub-contracted partners and assumes an understanding of shared values that puts the learner at the centre of all, and that reflects our efforts and achievements in fulfilling the Adult Education vision and mission statements below.

1.2 The vision of the council is: Where learning is for life and opportunities are for all.

1.3 The Mission of the council is: Promote, provide and support high quality learning experiences for the benefit of individuals and communities.

1.4 Plymouth City Council recognises that the learners of the city require access to learning provided by specialist providers/delivery agents. It therefore views working in partnership across the range of providers under its contracting arrangements will achieve a more coherent offer for the city and its adult learning community.

1.5 Plymouth City Council, along with partners and stakeholders, use their knowledge and contacts to provide coherent, responsive, community and employer based adult learning opportunities designed to:

  • raise awareness of the benefits and potential of adult learning in Plymouth by promoting a culture of lifelong learning
  • fulfil the individual potential of Plymouth adult learners
  • contribute to social inclusion and economic regeneration of Plymouth’s communities
  • assist in widening participation and the provision of first steps learning
  • develop strategies to enable local people to overcome past experiences and other barriers toward learning achievement, realising their potential and accessing lifelong learning
  • provide a needs-led, on-demand service and provision.

1.6 Particularly, Plymouth City Council and its partners and stakeholders will:

  • target adults in the workforce and community to improve their functional skills in literacy, numeracy and ICT, enabling them to be more effective in work and society.
  • offer a programme of award-bearing courses leading to national qualifications in line with Government targets and strategy
  • improve employability and career prospects of adults through a learning advice team
  • provide a visible and coherent set of progression routes for young adults who failed to reach their potential at school
  • work with employers to meet their training needs
  • deliver a family learning programme as a first-line access for adult returners to learning
  • contribute to meeting the skills and learning needs of adults not in employment and those at risk of redundancy
  • support voluntary, statutory and community organisations in:
    • raising awareness of adult learning in Plymouth
    • continuing to improve the quality of existing learning opportunities through partnership arrangements
    • deliver an appropriate range of adult learning, which provides knowledge, skills and personal development opportunities for excluded groups from BME backgrounds, older learners, those not in employment, those at risk of redundancy
    • continuing to develop performance management systems for first class reporting and planning functions
    • work consistently to the objectives of the Ofsted Education Inspection Framework; Self-Assessment and the Quality Improvement Plan for the purpose of Service improvement
    • work towards becoming an Ofsted “outstanding” rated provider of adult educational opportunities

Quality assurance, improvement, equality & diversity and health and safety

2.1 Plymouth City Council will provide the Quality Assurance framework reflecting its Vision and Mission statement that puts the learner at the centre of all service activity.

2.2 Plymouth City Council will work with its Sub-Contractors to support and monitor activity that ensures a robust adherence to the framework, planned improvements, and the subsequent reporting requirements.

2.3 Plymouth City Council will work with its Sub-Contractors to support, monitor and report on the development of learning that reflects need, diversity and inclusion across the City, implementing widening participation and equal opportunities activities.

2.4 Plymouth City Council, will work with its Sub-Contractor to make available reports as required, which will be submitted to Stakeholders as required e.g.

  • self-assessment report
  • quality improvement plans
  • curriculum review
  • quality and education data
  • development plans

2.5 The Sub-Contractor will implement the agreed Plymouth City Council Quality Assurance policy and procedures, using agreed systems and listed documents that form part of these systems.

2.6 The Sub-Contractor will assist in the research, analysis and reporting of an annual Self-Assessment Report and Quality Improvement Plan to agreed guidelines drawing on relevant service performance reports and data ensuring contributions are made by stakeholders including learners, tutors, community groups and employers etc.

2.7 The Sub-Contractor will allow access by the Plymouth City Council, On Course South West and any other person nominated by ESFA funding guidance; to any aspect of their provision for monitoring, inspection, or self-assessment purposes.

2.8 These requirements will be monitored through the bi-monthly service performance reports produced by the On Course South West using MIS data derived from the Sub-Contractor’s TERMS data.

2.9 Poor performance against targets will require the Sub-Contractor to prepare and implement recovery plans.

2.10 Data used may include notional future achievement values based on previous year’s achievement and/or set by the Education and Skills Funding Agency.

2.11 The Sub-Contractor must ensure that all venues (including apprenticeship work placements) are safe and suitable for the delivery of adult learning and comply with the Council’s policy.

2.12 The Sub-Contractor must ensure that they are fully conversant with the Skills Funding Agency’s Safer Learner concept.

2.13 The Sub-Contractor is required to notify Plymouth City Council at the OCSW team, using the standard Plymouth City Council accident report form, of any accidents involving staff and/or learners whilst engaged in learning provision sub-contracted by Plymouth City Council and to allow Plymouth City Council to carry out any required investigation and report to the HSE.

2.14 The Sub-Contractor will ensure that all staff have been recruited following a safer recruitment process. This process should be made available to Plymouth City Council on request.

2.15 The Sub-Contractor must ensure that all staff required to have a current DBS enhanced check, have one.

2.16 The Sub-Contractor is required to have in place a staff appraisal and performance monitoring system, or be willing to adopt the Plymouth City Council approach.

2.17 The Sub-Contractor must hold public and employer liability insurance to the level within the contract and display their certificates.

Sub-contracting charges and fees

3.1 For the academic year 2022/23 the subcontractor charge is calculated to provide a fair reflection of the costs associated with leadership and management of contract; 

  • AEB it is 20% of earned income
  • 16-19 Learning Programmes it is 20% of earned income.

3.2 The charge covers the following services provided by Plymouth City Council:

  • managing relationships with ESFA
  • Sharing good practice from national groups
  • membership of local strategic groups (eg ESB / LSEG)
  • enrolment input and preparation of learning agreements and register
  • course file monitoring (quality and compliance)
  • regular contact with MIS to ensure courses set up correctly and data input to maximise funding and success
  • monthly review data – retention, achievement, success, earnings
  • termly contract review meetings (3 times per year)
  • strategic updates in relation to funding and provision including curriculum planning
  • observation of teaching and learning, and feedback
  • information, advice and guidance for learners (matrix accredited team)
  • inclusion within provision directory and website (as appropriate)
  • provision of CPD
  • guidance and templates for input into self-assessment and quality improvement process
  • servicing of sub-contractor meetings
  • acting as lead provider for bids including preparation of bid documentation and monitoring of goals

Charges may be made for work over and above the sub-contract charge and will be invoiced separately. This charge may include:

  • registration of learners on qualifications = cost of registration plus 20%
  • one to one consultancy in respect of quality improvement, contract compliance, delivery recovery plans and discrete CPD = £25 per hour

3.3 Plymouth City Council shall pay the full value allocated by the Education and Skills Funding Agency’s ILR system (for ASB, CL, 16-18 apprenticeship and 16-18 delivery), per learner less the agreed 20% charge. This allocation is payable according to the terms and conditions within contracts, an agreed proportion, not exceeding 25%, will be retained held until ILR reconciliation has been completed in November 2023 ensuring that all paperwork has been received and all delivery undertaken. Payments will be stopped and/or restarted during the academic year dependent upon delivery targets being met. Where all delivery has not been undertaken or the funding rate has changed, Plymouth City Council will re-claim any overpayments made to the Sub-Contractor.

Policy review and communication

4.1 The policy will be reviewed on an annual basis in May each year.

4.2 The document will be shared with existing sub-contractors when indicative offers are made.

4.3 The document will be uploaded on to the Plymouth City Council website annually, from May, to be accessed by organisations expressing an interest in working with Plymouth City Council.