A supported Internship is a work-based study programme for 16 to 24 year olds with special educational needs and disabilities, who have an education, health and care plan.

The internships are unpaid and are a for 12 months. The young people are enrolled with a training provider but spend most of their time within a workplace.

The aim is to support young people with special education needs and disabilities to develop their work skills in order to gain paid employment. This is ideal for young people wanting to gain experience however there are no guarantees of gaining employment. For more information, please contact your special educational needs casework officer or email sen@northyorks.gov.uk.

How to decide?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of each option?


Supported internship


Further Education


Other option i.e personal learning college


  • real work experience
  • just for young people with an education, health and care plan so work place will be aware of inclusivity
  • minimum of 26 weeks on work placement
  • useful experience to add to CV
  • some professional qualifications gained sooner
  • free training and studies
  • paid NMW whilst on apprenticeship
  • focus on training for a specific job
  • can gain degree through scheme
  • can study degree after scheme
  • some professions require A-levels or a degree
  • gives maximum career flexibility
  • can work part-time
  • emphasis is on education, learning and/or specific career
  • ability to network with peers
  • can gain work experience in longer holidays
  • real work experience
  • opportunity to gain invaluable work experience
  • traineeship can be from 6 weeks to a year (though most last for less than 6 months)
  • training is also provided
  • can lead to apprenticeship or employment
  • specialist bespoke learning


  • unpaid
  • 12 months commitment
  • no guarantee of a job
  • not available with all professions
  • limited networking opportunity
  • working while studying can be challenging
  • can limit career path
  • no job guarantee afterwards
  • may have to compete with graduates for jobs
  • requires certain level of GCSE qualification
  • qualifying for some professions takes a long time
  • student finances
  • no guarantee of a job afterwards
  • unpaid
  • must be unemployed and 16 to 24 years old
  • no guarantee of a job
  • very specific criteria for gaining a place, this includes having an education, health and care plan

Other things to consider

  • will you enjoy your course and will it get you closer to where you want to be?


  • will you be able to afford this route?  are there any grants to help you? 
  • will you want or need an advocate for you at meetings? If so who?

Moving on support

  • What sort of support will you get to help you move to your new education provider?  


  • how will you get to where you need to be and how long will it take? 
  • how much will it cost?

Regular support

  • what extra support do you need and will you get it (if you have one will your education, health and care plan continue)?

Type of Provision

Name of Provider


Additional Info

Contact Details

Supported internship



Disability action Yorkshire website

Denise Baynton/Harriet Walker

Supported internship

Harrogate College (Project Search)




Supported internship



Henshaws college website

Daniel White

Telephone: 01423 886451

Mobile: 07970637035

Supported internship



Harrogate skills 4 living page

Telephone: 01423 449314

Supported internship

Craven College


Craven college website

Richard Newall

Telephone: 01756 243 503

Supported internship

Blueberry Academy

Selby, York, Scarborough

The Blueberry Academy team provide specialist support for young people and adults with learning differences, autism, social, emotional and mental health needs and/or other disabilities. The main aims of Blueberry are to promote employability and independence. We offer education and employment services in York, Selby and Scarborough.

We offer supported internships and personalised learning programmes for students aged 16-25 years, who have an education, health and care plan. We also offer supported employment services for adults funded through social care.


Supported internship


Darlington, York

Project choice supported internships page

Dominic Watson (Darlington)

Telephone: 07825456050

Melanie Slater (York)

Telephone: 07766 257914

Supported internship

Supporting Choice


Supporting choice offers a range of supported learning programs for young people with learning difficulties, disabilities and autism.

We deliver supported internships, supported employment programs and employability pathways leading to a range of successful outcomes.

We have a valuable portfolio of competent and confident work placement providers across a range of vocational profiles.

Richard Oldale

Telephone: 01723 480032

Mobile: 07535909842

Supported internship




Amanada Scringeour

Email: amandascrimgeour@groundwork.org.uk

Telephone: 01757 292124

Mobile: 07813364219

Supported internship

Middlesbrough College


Supported internships at Middlesbrough College | School Leavers | Middlesbrough College website

Jenny Cairnes

Email: j.cairns@mbro.ac.uk

Supported internship

Prior Pursglove College


Prior Pursglove college learning guide

Paul Richter

Telephone: 01287 280250

Travel Information

For a supported internship, travel is slightly different than other provision as transport will come in two different forms. For the education day, the transport can be applied through us. You will need to apply for your transport every year after you’re 16 years old. Please view our post 16 travel assistance page to get more information and apply as soon as you can after the 31 May for September start dates.

Transport for the work placement element will be provided via access to work from the department for work and pensions. Your supported internship provider will do the claim for you and arrange the transport which is in the form of a taxi to and from your home to your work placement (this will be arranged if you live in a rural area and there is no available public transport to get you to and from your work placement or you are unable to travel on public transport). Speak to your training provider who will arrange this for you, they will ask you to supply three taxi quotes and they will then use the cheapest taxi company.