The live-action children's television industry produces quality programmes across all genres for young people up to 15 years old. Contributions made by programme-makers to the Children's TV Skills Fund support skills and training in this area of television.
For parents, teachers and prospective students seeking more information about careers in children's TV, please visit Education & Training.
The Children’s TV Skills Fund, formerly known as the children's TV levy, was created in 2015 following the introduction of UK tax relief for children’s live-action TV. It was agreed those utilising the tax credit would contribute to a fund managed by ScreenSkills.
The key purpose of the fund is to support skills activity to develop freelancers and talent working at all levels in children’s TV, in order to advance their careers as well as bring new entrants into the sector. This activity aims to increase the workforce in the UK.
Productions pay 0.5% of their production budget spent in the UK into the fund, and contributions are capped at £41,800 per production (the cap increases each year in line with RPI).
To maximise the opportunities offered to contributors, including the potential to access Trainee Finder trainees, productions should contact ScreenSkills about contributing as soon as possible. Making your contribution to the investment fund does not have to coincide with your application for tax credit.
Since 2015, the fund has raised £472,321 which has been invested in training and career development for the children’s TV industry. Decisions about how the funds are spent are made by industry leaders in the sector who sit on the Children’s TV Council.
This fund applies specifically to children's live-action TV productions. Producers working in animated children's TV should visit the animation page for information about funding provided via the Animation Skills Fund.
Production companies who pay into the investment fund receive opportunities to access training that addresses the industry's priority skills needs. Click on the following links to download ScreenSkills Children’s TV Skills Fund booklet (PDF) or read about our schemes below.
ScreenSkills training schemes for children's TV
Make a Move
Productions contributing to the Children's TV Skills Fund can receive support for in-house training. Applications can be submitted to support the training needed for an active production or for investment in skills development for your staff or business. Companies can apply for up to £10,000 for activity including, but not limited to, shadowing, mentoring and ‘stepping up’ programmes, professional development of employees and freelancers or external training programmes.
In partnership with high-end TV, there is currently a further £2,500 of funding available for those looking to train a production coordinator or production manager. For more information and application details, download the Children's TV Make a Move Guidelines.
Children's TV Trainee Finder
Trainee Finder is an entry-level placement scheme which aims to ensure a continued supply of a new generation of talent in the screen industries. Taking trainees through Trainee Finder enables you to claim back up to 50% of the trainee’s training allowance for the duration of their placement. For more details about taking on a Trainee Finder trainee please email ScreenSkills' Trainee Finder manager Patrizia Berardi at: Patrizia.Berardi@screenskills.com.
To read about the positive experience of production companies taking trainees go to our recent case studies for Class Dismissed and Millie Inbetween. If you would like to find out more about becoming a children's TV trainee please visit the Trainee Finder page. Trainee Finder is currently closed for applications. Recruitment will begin again in late 2019.
Schemes supported by ScreenSkills Children's TV Skills Fund
These are schemes or programmes that ScreenSkills does not directly manage, but that are fully or partly supported by the investment fund. For more information about future dates please contact the providers directly.
Get the Knowledge!
A course on how to make great programmes for and with children. This practical workshop from Grand Scheme Media was led by Alison Cresswell, UK leading expert on working with children, to encourage creativity and understanding in the production of media content for children. Set at introductory/refresher level, the course covered all the basics of creating and producing content for children, from initial idea to recording.
Primed and Ready
A course for junior TV camera and sound crew looking to work in children's TV. Participants learn about the professional behaviour required to work with children in a range of production environments including studio and location. The course also provides insight into techniques and equipment, dealing with difficult recording setups, and opportunities for work in the children's sector. For information about future Grand Scheme Media courses keep an eye on their Eventbrite page or email: email@example.com.
Programmes in partnership with high-end TV
The growth of big budget, large-scale drama in the UK as a result of the high-end TV tax credit has had an effect on the availability of crew able to work on children’s TV drama productions. It has also had an impact on how quickly people advance. In recognition of this, high-end TV works with children’s TV to ensure access to relevant training opportunities is available to those working or looking to work in children’s drama. These opportunities currently include the Skills Passport directory listing short courses for high-end and children's TV professionals
For more information about the Children's TV Skills Fund and development or training opportunities it supports, please email Sarah Joyce, TV associate, at: firstname.lastname@example.org.