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Training and employment

Students are expected to stay in some form of education or training until they're aged 18. This doesn't have to be in school. Apprenticeships and traineeships are a great way to do this.


An apprenticeship is a job with training so you can earn while you learn and get qualifications. You can work alongside experienced people who are willing to pass on their skills and knowledge. You must be aged 16-or-over to start an apprenticeship.

Apprenticeship training can last from one to four years, depending on the level and industry you choose.

There are four levels you can study at:

  • Intermediate (Level 2)
  • Advanced (Level 3)
  • Higher (Level 4 and 5)
  • Degree (Level 6 and 7)

As an apprentice aged 16+, you’ll be paid at least £5.28 per hour; Some apprenticeships may pay more.

Types of apprenticeships

There are apprenticeships for lots of different job areas, such as:

  • IT
  • construction
  • engineering
  • health and care
  • retail

Where to find an apprenticeship

If you need help finding an apprenticeship, speak to your parents, carer, teacher, Social Worker or PA. We also have a dedicated care leaver employment co-ordinator and inclusive employment co-ordinator who can help you to find an apprenticeship, or work experience, in an area you are interested in. Please speak to your PA to be put in contact with these co-ordinators.

You can also search for apprenticeships on the government website find an apprenticeship, at apprenticeships and work-based training or contact local employers and companies directly to see if they have apprenticeships available or if they would be willing to set one up for you.


Traineeships are for 16 to 24-year-olds who want to work but need extra help to gain an apprenticeship or job.

Traineeships are unpaid, but you'll have the chance to develop skills and get workplace experience that employers ask for.

Read more about traineeships on the GOV.UK website.

The Care Leaver Covenant

The Care Leaver Covenant is a promise made by the private, public and voluntary sectors to provide support for care leavers aged 16-25 to help you to live independently. Local and national apprenticeships, internships and employment opportunities are available to browse on their website or in the ‘connects’ app.

Care leaver opportunities


There are plenty of ways to search for a job such as:

  • The local newspaper
  • Online sites such as the ‘Find a job’ service and Indeed
  • Taking your CV to local employers, such as restaurants, cafes or local shops
  • Visiting a Job Centre

Your Personal Advisor works closely with a number of organisations such as the Young Peoples Service, Work Zone, The Youth Federation and Total People; These services can help prepare you for work by supporting you to create an up-to-date CV (curriculum vitae), providing confidence building/motivational workshops, organising work taster placements so you can make an informed decision about your career choice and finding employment opportunities. Your Personal Advisor can also help you to access your National Insurance number and set up a bank account to help prepare you for paid employment.

More information around support to enter employment can be found below:

Young People’s Service (YPS)

The Young People’s Service are part of the Council and can provide the following 1:1 support:

  • Information, advice and guidance around career planning
  • Information on further education options and courses that can be accessed in the community
  • Support to find employment, apprenticeships, traineeships, supported Internships and supported apprenticeships
  • Help to create a CV and complete job applications
  • Provide mock interviews

Young People’s Service have a dedicated Employment Co-ordinator who prioritises care leavers and can support you to access opportunities such as ‘a day in the life’ and work experience/job interviews in any area you would like to work in. Please discuss with your Personal Advisor if you would like to access this service or email the service directly -

Young people's service

The Council also offers its care leavers the following opportunities:

  • Care leavers will be given notice of all apprenticeships and other suitable roles prior to general advertisement. We will guarantee an interview for those who can meet the minimum criteria.
  • Care leavers will be given the opportunity to access any volunteer opportunities.

Core Assets, who provide the Caring 2 Care Team to Children’s Services, provide two apprentice post per year to care leavers, working in the North West. The apprentices will act as care leaver champions within the organisation and explore creative offers of support that meet the needs of young people in Cheshire West.

So, if you are interested, why not talk to your Social Worker or Personal Advisor about it?

Youth Services

Youth Services in Cheshire West offer care leavers volunteer opportunities and work experience. The Youth Service also offers a guaranteed interview to care leavers for employment opportunities that arise in the service. They also offer training and qualifications in Youth Skills (National Vocation qualification) NVQ2 and NVQ3 if you are successful in a Youth Project Worker role.