Sharing funding knowledge to gain more tradies

Did you think that Apprentice Boost was finished? You’re probably not the only one, and well, it’s not! Below you’ll find some funding information useful to thinking about taking on new apprentices.

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A little background about government funding

Fees Free Tertiary Education and Training was introduced on 1 January 2018 for first-time tertiary learners in their first year of provider-based study, or their first two years of work-based learning.

Then in August 2020, the Government initiated two additional tertiary education funding schemes: (1) the Targeted Training Apprenticeship fund (TTAF), also known as free trades training, and (2) Apprenticeship Boost.

Over time, the funding packages have received changes to names, eligibility criteria, and funding amounts. The complexities of different funding systems and amendments over time have resulted in some confusion in the industry. We’d like to clarify the current funding situation so that employers are aware what funding is currently available.

Three things you need to know about government funding

  1. Fees Free is still active and can be applied for through
    This funding is for apprentices to apply
    Requirements for this grant have had frequent changes. Eligibility for Fees Free has been dependent on previous studies undertaken by the apprentice as well as age and duration.

Fees Free funding had a period of virtually no requirements and a blanket approach to all fees being free.

Eligibility criteria do apply, such as when you last attended high school and if you have enrolled in a previous study programme.
Apprentices must apply for this funding.
For apprentices to apply for Fees Free study, they must have their NSN number and may be asked to complete a Statutory Declaration form.

2. TTAF or free trades training ended 31 December 2022

TTAF removed financial boundaries for apprentices by covering up to 100% of their fees. This funding, accompanied by a strong economy, resulted in record-high enrollments for BCITO apprenticeship training over the 2021 and 2022 years.
The TTAF ended on 31 December 2022.

3. Apprenticeship Boost is still active and can be applied for through Work and Income NZ

This funding is for employers to apply
Apprenticeship Boost focuses on removing the financial barriers for companies that train by offering employers a $1000 monthly payment for the first year of training and $500 per month for the second year. This financial incentive assists businesses to train learners, enabling the learner to upskill and become a viable asset to the business.

Apprenticeship Boost Is still active and can be applied for through Work and Income NZ. Funding for 2024 has now been revised to $500 monthly for up to 24 months of training.

How to apply

To be eligible for Apprentice Boost, the employer must apply and meet the following criteria:

  • Have an active enrollment in a NZ Apprenticeship or Managed Apprenticeship.
  • Must pay either minimum wage, training wage or starting wage.
  • Confirm/reconfirm details and training status of the apprentice each month.

How to reconfirm

For a complete list of eligibility terms, go to Apprenticeship Boost - Work and Income

2024 Funding

Apprentice Boost and Fees Free is committed to running until the end of 2024. Details on future changes are yet to be decided. BCITO advises all employers and apprentices enlisted in training or considering training in 2024 to please check for eligibility to receive funding, and please apply as soon as possible.