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WMCOP Bulletin December-January 2017

Welcome to the December 2016-January 2017 edition of our Community of Practitioner's Bulletin - your link to what's been happening in Teacher Education in the lifelong learning education sector in the last month.

Theresa May's speech on the 'shared society' and the Government's Green Paper on their Industrial Strategy are the main headlines this month. The Green Paper 'an industrial strategy to deliver a high-skilled, competitive economy that benefits people throughout the UK' sets out ten pillars for growth and is in the Consultation stage currently. A revised technical education strategy is at the heart of the Industrial Strategy which concentrates on higher technical education in STEM subjects and looking at local area skills gaps.

Theresa May has also announced a comprehensive package of measures to transform mental health support in our schools, workplaces and communities and there will shortly be a Green Paper on how this will be implemented.

The Skills Plan is moving forward with the DfE recruiting industry professionals to advise on occupational standards for the technical qualifications. There is news on apprenticeship funding and an upwardly revised quota for apprenticeships in the public sector to 200,000 by 2020.

School and College Performance Tables have been published for 2015-16 together with a guide setting out the headline measures for the 2016 Performance Tables. SEND funding has been confirmed and there is funding for safeguarding projects.

In HE, hefce has announced the National Collaborative Outreach Programme to increase participation in HE, a hefce report has been published showing good progress on preventing terrorism, a profile of staff employed by higher education providers has been published as have details of student enrolments and qualifications for 2015-16.

We'd welcome your views and any recommendations you have on articles, books or useful websites you've discovered so email us at: and share your ideas.

See below for:

News from the Profession


Discussion documents


Government News


Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy

The shared society: Prime Minister's speech at the Charity Commission annual meeting: Theresa May sets out her vision for the shared society, the government's role within it and how to transform mental health support. Her speech can be read at:

Developing a modern industrial strategy: The Government has published a Green Paper setting out it's vision for 'an industrial strategy to deliver a high-skilled, competitive economy that benefits people throughout the UK'. It is based on 10 principles: Investing in science, research & innovation; developing skills; upgrading infrastructure, supporting businesses to start and grow; improving procurement; encouraging trade and inward investment; delivering affordable energy and clean growth; cultivating world-leading sectors; driving growth across the whole country and creating the right local institutions. The Green Paper and a 10 Pillars document can be found at:

Technical education at heart of modern Industrial Strategy: Theresa May launched the Government's Industrial Strategy this month which included revising technical education. This included: Establishing Institutes of Technology responsible for delivering higher level technical education in STEM subjects across all regions; working with local partners, including university faculties to expand the provision of specialist maths education across the country; encouraging the growth of STEM subjects in higher education; testing ambitious new approaches to encourage lifelong learning, particularly where industries are changing or in decline by considering the role of community learning, looking at maintenance loans for higher technical education, a new website for technical education courses and working with local areas on ways to close the skills gap.

Department for Education

Industry professionals to lead technical education panels: As set out in the Skills Plan, the DfE is seeking experienced industry professionals to form a ‘panels of professionals’ to develop occupational standards for new technical qualifications, as part of reforms to the 16+ skills system. The reformed system will consist of 15 routes across all technical education, encompassing both college-based and employment-based learning. Each route brings together occupations with related skills, knowledge and behaviour requirements into groupings, such as ‘engineering and manufacturing’, ‘health and science’ and ‘digital’. Together, these routes cover 13 million roles in the economy at the moment. Further details are at:

Institute for Apprenticeships guidance published for consultation: Consultation ends 31 January 2017. The Institute will act as an independent body to support the integrity of the apprenticeships system, with a mandate to assure quality and to provide objective, independent advice to Government on future funding provision for apprenticeship training. The Government is consulting on how the Institute for Apprenticeships will operate and has set out draft strategic guidance. The Consultation can be found at:

Apprenticeship funding: how it will work: Updated details of how government will fund apprenticeship training in England from May 2017, and what these changes will mean for employers has been published at:

Thousands of apprentices set to transform the public sector: Robert Halfon has announced that the DfE is setting the public sector a target of recruiting 200,000 more apprentices by 2020. This builds on the government’s commitment to deliver 3 million apprenticeships by 2020, by requiring at least 2.3% of the workforce in public bodies in England to be apprentices. Further details at:

16 to 19 accountability headline measures: A Guide for schools, colleges and local authorities on new measures in the 2016 performance tables, has been published. The new headline measures are: progress; attainment; progress in English and maths; retention and destinations. The technical guide explains how the headline measures are calculated and the briefing note presents a summary of the measures. They can be found at:

Timeline for sixth-form and further education colleges: mandatory: Updated guidance on what sixth-form and further education colleges must know to plan for the academic year ahead has been published at: A Timeline has also been published at:

Post-16 institutions omnibus: wave 3 survey: A summary of responses to questions asked in the post-16 institutions omnibus survey has been published at:

School and college performance tables: 2015 to 2016: The performance tables report the results of students of sixth-form age in secondary schools and further education colleges in the academic year 2015 to 2016 have been published at:

Destinations of KS4 and KS5 pupils: 2015 (revised): Revised data on key stage 4 (KS4) and key stage 5 (KS5) students going into education, employment and training destinations show that: 94% were in sustained education, employment or training in the year after key stage 4; 88% after key stage 5. The figures for disadvantaged students were 84% at KS4 and 65% at KS5, however they were less likely to be in higher education or sustained employment. Details of all the statistics can be found at:

A level and other 16 to 18 results: 2015 to 2016 (revised): Revised A level and other results for 16- to 18-year-olds at the end of their final year have been published. These are the final figures from the provisional figures published in October 2016. They can be found at:

Post-16 maths participation: 2014 to 2015: A release showing whether or not people are studying maths in post-16 education and if they are, what level they are studying, has been published at:

Further education area reviews: guidance for providers: Guidance about the area reviews of sixth-form and further education colleges and how to carry out recommendations has been published at:

Further education area reviews: standards colleges can expect: Guidance on what colleges can expect from the teams carrying out further education area reviews in their area has been published at: Example data packs have also been published at:

Education Secretary announces 6 new opportunity areas: Justine Greening has announced more Opportunity areas which create local partnerships with early years providers, schools, colleges, universities, businesses, charities and LAs, together with a research school in each area established by the Education Endowment Foundation. There are now 12 Opportunity areas with the aim of increasing social mobility. Further details at:

Equal opportunities for people who use British Sign Language: For the first time, British Sign Language (BSL) will be accepted as an alternative qualification to functional skills in English for apprentices where BSL is their first language. This follows on from the recommendations of the Maynard Report into improving access to apprenticeships for people with learning disabilities. Further details at:

Prime Minister unveils plans to transform mental health support: Theresa May announces a comprehensive package of measures to transform mental health support in our schools, workplaces and communities. This includes a major thematic review of children and adolescent mental health services across the country and a new green paper on children and young people’s mental health to set out plans to transform services in schools, universities and for families. Further details at:

Staff at higher education providers in the UK: 2015 to 2016: A profile of staff employed at higher education providers in the United Kingdom for the academic year 2015 to 2016 has been published, showing contract type, gender and academic/non-academic statistics at:

Higher education enrolments and qualifications: 2015 to 2016: This Statistical First Release (SFR) provides details of student enrolments and qualifications obtained by HE students at HE providers in the UK for the academic year 2015/16. Enrolments: There has been an upward trend in degree enrolments generally, although other undergraduate first year enrolments have strongly declined since 2008/09. First year enrolments onto all postgraduate courses have shown little overall change in ten years. Qualifications: The number of first degree qualifications obtained has increased with the exception of 2014/15, likely to be related to the drop in first year enrolments in 2012/13. Postgraduate qualifications increased up to 2011/12 but numbers have since stabilised. Further details at:

Governance handbook and competency framework: Guidance on the roles and duties of school governing boards, and advice on the skills, knowledge and behaviours they need to be effective, has been published at:

Funding for special educational needs support confirmed: Funding from April 2017 has been confirmed to help embed the reforms made to the system of support for SEND and continue the support for the groups who have been instrumental in bringing about the progress seen to date. Further details at:

Residential special schools and colleges: a call for evidence: Consultation closes 17 March 2017. The Government is seeking evidence on the experiences and outcomes of children and young people in residential special schools and colleges. Further details at:

Independent special schools and colleges: Lists of all independent schools and colleges for children with special educational needs or disability (SEND) have been published at:

Government backs projects to help safeguard vulnerable children: Nine projects with ambitious plans to tackle specific forms of abuse affecting children have been awarded a share of government grant funding in 2016 to 2018. Further details at:

Professional Bodies

 Education and Training Foundation

Recruiting Science Engineering and Technology teachers: Further Forces: The Further Forces programme is an initiative which offers Armed Forces personnel with significant Science Engineering and Technology experience, an opportunity to be retrained as a teacher in further education or training. Further details at:

Ten new projects to support sector through Skills Plan challenges: Government funding has been obtained for projects designed to help the sector respond to the challenges of Skills Plan implementation and address issues highlighted as systemic by the FE Commissioner through the Area Review process. Further details at:

Qualifications in education, training and assessment: revised guidance published: The ETF, working with a variety of sector bodies, has produced revised guidance on the qualifications in education, training and assessment available and relevant for working in the post-16 education and training sector. Further details at:*

Ofsted and Ofqual

Ofsted Annual Report 2015/16: State of the nation report into the quality of schools, early years and the further education and skills sector, including supporting statistics. This is Sir Michael Wilshaw’s last Annual Report as Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector. The report is underpinned by the findings of almost 25,000 inspections of schools, colleges and providers of early years and further education and skills and can be found at:

Accreditation of GCSEs, AS and A levels for teaching from 2017: An updated table, published by Ofqual, showing the status of subjects being accredited for teaching from September 2017, can be found at:

Timeline of changes to GCSEs, AS and A levels: An overview of what changes will be made to GCSE, AS and A level qualifications between 2015 and 2019 has been published at:

Removing adult literacy and numeracy criteria: Ofqual announces intention to withdraw redundant regulations for certificates in adult literacy and numeracy as these are now redundant. Further details at:

Exam system contingency plan: England, Wales and Northern Ireland: Guidance on a joint contingency plan is in place to deal with any major disruption that may affect exam candidates. It can be found at:

Entry-level qualifications: requirements: This collection sets out the rules and regulations for entry-level qualifications in GCSE subjects. There are no additional rules for other entry-level qualifications. The collection can be found at:

Skills Funding Agency

SFA: funding rates and formula: Details of the funding system used for apprenticeship frameworks and standards from 1 May 2017 have been published at:

Adult education budget: funding rates and formula 2017 to 2018: This document describes the calculation of ‘formula-funded’ earnings for the adult education budget (AEB), 16 to 18 traineeships and learning support for these programmes. Further details at:

College funding: early intervention and prevention: A Guidance document describing how the EFA and SFA will engage with sixth-form colleges and general further education colleges who are at risk of failure, has been published at:

Apprenticeship training agencies: The updated list of training agencies can be found at:

Apprenticeship standards: The January updated list of apprenticeship standards and frameworks have been published:
Apprenticeship Standards and occupations has been published at:
The Standards in development can be found at:
Apprenticeship Frameworks can be found at:

Early recruitment of higher and degree apprenticeship vacancies for 2017: This spreadsheet shows the higher and degree apprenticeship vacancies that employers have on offer for 2017. It can be found at:

Traineeships: Updated information for traineeships has been published at:

Higher Education Funding Council for England

Strong progress on preventing terrorism: The report, ‘Implementation of the Prevent duty in the higher education sector in England: 2015-16’ (HEFCE 2017/01), shows that more than four-fifths of higher education providers (84 per cent) have put robust policies and processes in place in response to the duty. Further details can be found at:,112732,en.html

A new approach to widening participation in higher education: HEFCE has announced a new programme to increase participation in higher education across England, the National Collaborative Outreach Programme. With funding for 29 local consortia, the programme will drive a step change in the progression into higher education of young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, including members of ethnic minority groups and young men. Further details at:,111712,en.html

HEFCE supports experimental innovation in learning and teaching: Sixty seven projects from universities and colleges have successfully bid for up to £50,000 each from the Catalyst Fund to develop innovations in learning and teaching for either undergraduate or postgraduate taught provision. Further details at:,111627,en.html

HEFCE to invest in university museums, galleries and collections: HEFCE will fund 33 higher education museums, galleries and collections which provide a unique and significant contribution to research and scholarship. Further details at:,112699,en.html

The government response to the Dowling Review: In its response the government recognises the crucial role of HEFCE’s Higher Education Innovation Funding (HEIF) in supporting university-business collaboration through flexible funding for knowledge exchange. The role of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) in encouraging collaboration with business is also recognised. The response also gives more detail on the additional funding through HEFCE over the next four years, to incentivise universities to work together across England supporting collaborations in technology transfer and in engaging with business. Further details are at:,112630,en.html



Collaborative Training Days - West Midlands: This Collaborative Practice Development Day in Walsall is a new CPD opportunity for practitioners and managers to enhance their skills and knowledge in teaching, learning, assessment and behaviour management. For details and eligibility for free training see:

Maths and English learning resilience courses: Subsidised One-day introduction to mathematical or English learning resilience, Three-day coaching skills for developing mathematical or English learning resilience and Four day introduction to maths or English learning resilience + coaching skills for developing mathematical or English learning resilience are available at venues around England. These courses are for both individuals and organisations and organisations are also invited to host courses. Further details at:

FE Week: FE Week describes itself as 'a lively read, offering a mixture of news, exclusives, expert comment, features, technical information, coffee break snippets and more. Worth a read at

Policy Watch, published by The Pearson Centre, has weekly updates on the latest educational initiatives and can be read at