What is a Coach Core Apprenticeship

How an apprenticeship works, why it might be right for you as an employer, and what makes the Coach Core one so special.

Working with Coach Core, we have 2 apprenticeship standards: Level 2 Community Activator Coach and Level 3 Community Sport & Health Officer. The Coach Core team can talk you through what they both look like and how we can support you to design the role that works for you as an employer. 

A Coach Core apprenticeship is designed to be of benefit to both you, the employer, and the person you employ. It is a way for you to bring someone into your workforce who you can develop and instil with the skills your business needs. For them it is an opportunity to step into the world of work whilst still getting the education and development that they will need to start a fulfilling career. 

Like all apprenticeships, they will be engaged approximately 30 hours a week. 80% of that time they will be part of your workforce where they can be assisting and running coaching sessions, working on office admin or other appropriate tasks. 20% of the time (typically 1 day a week) they will be in education – working with their tutor towards their apprenticeship qualifications. 

There are many apprenticeship providers around the country, but none work on a model like Coach Core’s and – to our knowledge – none see the results we do.

Over the last few years we have taken on 10 apprentices though Coach Core, which has allowed us to have a bigger reach within our community projects. Due to the apprentices developing a broad range of skills and accessing many experiences through the partnership model, many of them have entered employment with us on the conclusion of their apprenticeship.

Liam Watson - Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation

What makes Coach Core special:

  • We provide grant funding to employers to contribute to the cost of bringing on an apprentice for the Level 2 apprenticeship (Community Activator Coach)
  • We’ve been doing this across the UK since 2012. We’ll support you through every step of the process and answer any questions you might have 
  • We work on a consortium model. We bring together a group of employers in an area and start a cohort of approximately 15 apprentices on their journey at the same time across those employers. What this means for you: 
    • Our recruitment events will give you the chance to meet many potential apprentices 
    • There is a dedicated Employment Coach who liaises between all the employers. Employers can support and learn from each other as well as providing additional development opportunities to each other’s apprentices. 
    • The apprentices have a group of peers they can use for support and encouragement 
  • Coach Core pride ourselves on our small group sizes and focus on quality over quantity. We also partner with a trusted training provider that we’ve been working with for several years. What this means is a high level of support for our apprentices and their employers. We believe this pays off:  70% of Coach Core apprentices graduate from their apprenticeships, this compares to recent national figures of 53%. 80% of Coach Core Apprentices go on to positive exit routes.

A Coach Core apprentice will be:

  • A high quality, consistent employee, representing significant value. Because they are working with you 30 hours a week, for a minimum of 15 months, they can really get to connect with you in a way casual staff cannot. 
  • A way to access and engage with new or disengaged demographics in your area. The apprenticeship is specifically designed to work with local communities to encourage active and healthy lifestyles. Further, an apprentice working in their community, they can be positive role model for those they work with. 

As a charity we are committed to providing opportunities to people who have faced challenges. That might mean, for example, that they disengaged with education, faced discrimination, or any other challenge that has created a barrier to education and employment. We work hard to partner with the right employers who will help shape and nurture the apprentices, whilst also understanding that they will give so much back in the time they are with you. 


Our requirements from you as an employer are simple; we ask that:

  • You are committed to helping people gain employment and education 
  • You provide ‘in kind’ donations of staff time, resources and training to benefit both your apprentice and the wider cohort 
  • You can commit to covering the wages and other ‘on costs’ of hiring an apprentice, and will issue them a contract with the same terms as other employees. 
  • Submit 2 case studies throughout the duration of the apprenticeships (we will support you with these)

My journey with Coach Core was a second chance at life for me. It gave me the motivation to build a career for myself. I've got so many ideas I can't wait to use in the future with sport.

Kelly - Coach Core graduate, Birmingham

A Coach Core apprenticeship lasts a minimum of 15 months (except for those in Glasgow and Wales). The cost borne by you the employer is around £16,770, with £3,500 coming from Coach Core for the level 2 apprenticeships and £6,000 drawn down from the government to cover education costs. These numbers are approximations only, and we encourage you to get in touch to talk them through with us before making any decisions based on them.

The above is just an overview. If you’d like to read more, please see these case studies, or take a look at things from an apprentice’s point of view. You can also find out more about how Coach Core works here.

If you’d like to have a conversation with us about what being an apprentice employer is like, please get in touch using the form below.