Apprentice rights, safety and responsibilities

If you hire an apprentice, they have the same rights and responsibilities as any other member of staff. This includes:

An induction

Access to the induction process for new staff and mandatory training to make sure they understand workplace policies and practices.

An employment contract

An employment contract setting out the employee’s rights, responsibilities and duties and the employment conditions. This is usually issued before the start date of the role and requires a dated signature from both the employer and the employee. (It is different to the apprenticeship contract with the University that lays out the terms of the training programme).

Pay and conditions

Working hours, annual leave entitlement and pay that meets the UK Government pay and conditions requirements for apprentices. Apprentices should not be asked to take annual leave for attendance of University or examinations related to their apprenticeship.

A probationary period

A probationary period such as three months at the start of employment. You should include details of the apprentice’s probationary period in their contract of employment.

Change of circumstances 

Some apprenticeships can span several years so we understand that your organisation/ apprentice’s situation may change during the programme. If something changes during the apprenticeship that may affect the quality of the apprentice’s training e.g. reduction in working hours, please contact your University of Leeds representative to discuss an action plan.

Health and safety

By law, employers must ensure the Health and Safety of all their employees as far as reasonably practicable, including apprentices. The University will talk to you about health and safety prior to the start of any apprenticeship programme.

There are also policies and practices that the University has in place to support your apprentice.


The University is committed to ensuring, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety of children, young persons and adults in vulnerable circumstances who are on its property or who are engaged in University activities at any location. See further information on our responsibilities and safeguarding policy (PDF)

Equality and diversity 

Every employer has a duty to create a work environment that promotes equality, diversity and inclusion. Your policies should meet the requirements laid out in the Equality Act (2010) and your apprentices should be inducted on your expectations and rules on this subject. View the University of Leeds Equality and Inclusion Guidance and Policies.

Pastoral support 

The University has a network of support and pastoral care to help your apprentice make the most of their time with us and to assist with any difficulties they may have. Our services will work together to ensure any problems are dealt with as quickly as possible. 

Support for disabled students 

If your apprentice has an impairment, health condition (including mental health conditions) or a specific learning difficulty, like dyslexia, it’s important they contact our Disability Services as soon as possible. It’s better if they contact us before they start their apprenticeship, so we can discuss their support needs and get everything in place. 


As part of the apprenticeship, we teach all apprentices about the Prevent strategy, published by the Government in 2011, is part of the UK’s overall counter-terrorism strategy, CONTEST. The aim of the Prevent strategy is to reduce the threat to the UK from terrorism by stopping people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism. In the Act, this is expressed as the need for education providers to “prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.” 

British Values 

As part of the apprenticeship, we also teach all apprentices about British Values, a government initiative to embed the cultural values of the country into the curriculum of education institutions. The four values outlined in the strategy are Mutual Respect and Tolerance, Democracy, The Rule of Law and Individual Liberty. 

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