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Education and jobs for cared for children

There is plenty of support on offer for cared-for young people looking to further their education or career. Find out which option suits you best:

Boroughwide apprenticeship programme

Apprenticeships consist of full time employment while working towards nationally accredited qualifications. Apprentices will be expected to combine employment with external assessments and exams. Apprenticeships are available with Rochdale Borough Council up to degree level. You will receive a wage whilst completing the apprenticeship.

What do I need to apply?

  • You must have GCSE Grade C in English and maths, or be VERY close to completing apprenticeship qualifications AND
  • Must be able to work 30-37 hours a week.

How do I apply for an apprenticeship?

With the council: if you're a cared-for young person or care leaver, speak to your personal adviser where you can receive information about opportunities with the council before they're advertised to the public.

Within the borough: find more apprenticeship opportunities within the borough

Traineeships with the council

A traineeship is a ‘stepping stone’ programme to prepare young people, aged 16-24 for employment and apprenticeships. The aim is to help care leavers get more work experience, employability skills or improved grades.

  • It lasts for up to 6 months.
  • Candidates will combine relevant qualifications with extensive work experience.
  • Working hours will vary with a minimum of about 16 hours per week.
  • You'll get support for travel costs during the programme.
  • It won't affect any benefits you receive.
  • While you don't receive payment during the traineeship you're guaranteed a work placement within the council which will enhance your CV and could lead to further opportunities.

What do I need to apply?

You need to have achieved grade D/E for GCSE English and maths.

How do I apply for a traineeship?

If you're a cared-for young person or care leaver, speak to your personal adviser where you can receive information about opportunities with the council before they're advertised to the public.

Jobs with training programme

  • For some young people, the apprenticeship or traineeship programmes may not be appropriate. The Jobs with Training programme provides part time employment with appropriate training for all academic levels. The programme can be organised to suit the kind of work you're interested in and qualifications will be at the correct level for your needs.
  • The jobs may be for a fixed period of time and will be flexible around hours to suit you.
  • There are a wide variety of jobs.

What do I need to apply?

  • You must be able to work part-time and attend appropriate training.
  • You don't need any academic qualifications for this programme.

How do I apply for the Jobs with Training programme?

If you're a cared-for young person or care leaver, speak to your personal adviser where you can receive information about opportunities with the council.

Joining the armed forces

If you're aged 16 or 17 and interested in joining the Armed Forces:

  • You could consider completing an armed forces college course. Talk to Positive Steps for further advice.
  • Your parent or other person with parental responsibility can give consent for you to enter the armed forces before your 18th birthday if you're accommodated under Section 20 of the Children Act 1989.
  • If you are cared for under a Care Order, we will not consent to you engaging in front line service (in battle) with any armed force as it could result in your death or serious injury.

Once you're 18, you no longer need consent and can make your own decision. If you then join the armed forces and are ‘eligible’ and living with a foster carer, you may be entitled to a ‘Staying Put’ arrangement for the first 3 months of the basic training. Find out more about Staying Put.


0300 303 0440

Phone: Monday-Friday 8.30am-4.30pm.

Cared For Children's Team
Floor 3, Fashion Corner
57-59 Drake Street
Rochdale OL16 1XL