Welcome to the March 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.
It's March so Budget time! The Chancellor announced funding for the new T-levels and increased learning hours and maintenance loans for students on higher level technical courses. In the HE sector, there is funding for new academic research placements, loans for part-time degree and doctoral students and an Industrial Strategy Challenge fund was launched.
The Government has announced their Midlands Engine Strategy which builds on their modern Industrial Strategy and a Policy paper has been published setting out details of the third round of Growth Deals in the Midlands which will help to fund local projects.
Theresa May has set out her vision for education supporting free schools, specialist maths schools and the new T-levels and Justine Greening has also given a key speech on education. Amanda Spielman, the new Ofsted Chief Inspector has also set out her vision for Ofsted's next five years and announced a thematic curriculum review with the FE curriculum offer forming a major part of this review.
The DfE and the SFA have published a new register of apprenticeship training providers who have undergone an assessment process and there are more details on maintenance and doctoral loans.
The ET Foundation has also been busy! It has published its third annual report on Initial Teacher Education; a revised version of the Guidance documents for the suite of Education and Training qualifications, which have been extended to July 2018; it has announced its intention to conduct a cross-sector Training Needs Analysis for staff in the FE and training sector and launched a new, 2 hour, online equality, diversity and inclusion course.
There are also updated Apprenticeship and Higher Apprenticeship guides, Apprenticeship funding and GCSE 'postcards' on the new 9-1 grades.
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See below for:
News from the Profession
Spring Budget: The Chancellor announced a number of Government areas relevant to education which will receive funding:
Investment in technical education for 16 to 19 year olds announced as the Government supports new T-levels for 16 to 19 year olds with technical students introduced from autumn 2019. Students will be able to choose from 15 different routes such as construction, digital or agriculture.
The number of hours of training for these students will increase by over 50%. As part of the course, all students will take part in an industry work placement.
The provision of maintenance loans for students doing higher-level technical courses at National Colleges and Institutes of Technology was also announced.
£300 million investment for new academic research placements, £90 million of which will provide 1,000 new PhD places, including in science, technology, engineering and maths; £210 million will create new fellowships, including programmes to attract top global talent to conduct research in areas such as bioscience and biotechnology, quantum technologies, and satellite and space technology.
Loans for part time and doctoral students from 2018: The government will provide maintenance loans for people entering part time degrees, and doctoral loans of up to £25,000 to support higher-level study (see below)
£270 million to launch the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund which sees initial funding to support research and innovation in universities and businesses, in new and innovative areas
A summary of the main points of the Budget can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/spring-budget-2017-21-things-you-need-to-know and the full speech is at: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/spring-budget-2017-philip-hammonds-speech
Why I'm giving education a huge boost: article by Theresa May: Theresa May sets out her vision for education and the importance of free schools, specialist maths schools and new technical versions of A levels. Further details at: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/why-im-giving-education-a-huge-boost-article-by-theresa-may
Department for Education
Education Secretary addresses ASCL conference: Justine Greening speaks to school and college leaders about the teaching profession and the recruitment and retention package. Further details at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/education-secretary-addresses-ascl-conference. Her speech can be read at: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/justine-greening-teacher-development-key-to-school-improvement
Top-quality training providers announced in new register: The DfE and the SFA have published a new register of apprenticeship training providers, making sure that anyone taking an apprenticeship is doing so with a top-quality, registered providers of apprenticeships, who have undergone their assessment process. New providers can apply to the register quarterly. Further details at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/top-quality-training-providers-announced-in-new-register
Skills funding letter: April 2017 to March 2018: This letter sets out the funding priorities and available budget for the further education and skills sector in the 2017 to 2018 financial year. It can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/skills-funding-letter-april-2017-to-march-2018
Accelerated degrees in higher education: A review of the existing evidence for undergraduate accelerated degrees as an alternative way of studying in higher education has been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/accelerated-degrees-in-higher-education
Part-time undergraduate maintenance loan: Summary of the responses received, along with the government’s response outlining the next steps including proposals to extend the loan to distance learning and to levels 4 and 5 in 2019/20. The report can be read at: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/part-time-undergraduate-maintenance-loan
Postgraduate doctoral loans: A summary of the responses received, along with the government’s response supporting the proposal and outlining the next steps for postgraduate doctoral loans has been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/postgraduate-doctoral-loans
Credit transfer in higher education: A literature review about using credit transfer between higher education institutions to support flexible study has been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/credit-transfer-in-higher-education
Further education and skills: January 2017: March update: Statistics about learner participation, outcomes and highest qualification held in further education and skills, reported for January 2017 have been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/further-education-and-skills-january-2017
16 to 18 completion and attainment qualifications: 2016: Qualifications included in the 2016 completion and attainment measure, and national average attainment data as applied to state-funded school sixth forms and colleges, has been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/16-to-18-completion-and-attainment-qualifications-2016
Higher education statistics: March update: Statistics about higher education including student enrolments and qualifications, and staff level data have been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/official-statistics-releases
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: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/independent-special-schools-and-colleges
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Midlands Engine Strategy: The Government has announced their Midlands Engine Strategy which builds on their modern Industrial Strategy and sets out the actions they are taking to address productivity barriers across the Midlands. Further details at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/midlands-engine-strategy
Midlands: Growth Deals: A Policy Paper has been published setting out details of the third round of Growth Deals in the Midlands which will help to fund local projects. Further details at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/midlands-growth-deals
The Education and Training Foundation
Initial Teacher Education report published: The ET Foundation has published its third annual report on Initial Teacher Education (ITE). This looks at the 2014/2015 academic year. The findings show that people often undergo ITE as part of a career change, or adding teaching to an existing technical profession.
The typical learner studies part-time while in-service. The average age has stayed around 37, and around 83% of learners taking Diplomas or PGCEs were previously qualified to level 4 or above. Further details at: http://www.et-foundation.co.uk/news/initial-teacher-education-report-published/
Qualifications in Education and Training: A revised version of the Guidance documents for the suite of Education and Training qualifications has been published and this can be found at: https://www.feadvice.org.uk/i-am-ite-provider-etf-guidance-documents/qualifications-education-and-training.
the original qualifications were due to expire with Ofqual in April 2017, however Awarding Bodies offering ITE qualifications have agreed to extend their qualifications until July 2018. It is planned that by this date the Foundation will have coordinated an approach to the renewal of these qualificatons.
Training Needs Analysis: Four key FE and training bodies collaborate on workforce needs: The ETF has announced its intention to conduct a cross-sector Training Needs Analysis for staff in the FE and training sector. The survey will be co-designed by ETF, AoC, AELP and HOLEX, and conducted with their support. The analysis will engage with staff at every level to inform discussions with government, devolved authorities, individual training providers, and employers and it will guide commissioning decisions and priorities of the Education and Training. Further details at: http://www.et-foundation.co.uk/news/training-needs-analysis-rigorous-cross-sector-programme/
New equality, diversity and inclusion course launched: A new 2 hour, online course has been launched to help apprenticeship staff engage and support a diverse range of apprentices (and their employers) right the way through the new apprenticeship standards journey. This course is free and there are further details at: http://www.et-foundation.co.uk/news/new-equality-diversity-inclusion-course-launched/
Self-assessment report published: The annual ET Foundation self-assessment report has been published at: http://www.et-foundation.co.uk/news/self-assessment-report-published/
Ofsted and Ofqual
Amanda Spielman's speech at the Association of Colleges Ofsted conference: 'A new direction': Amanda Spielman talks about the changes in the FE landscape, the new T Levels, Brexit and sets out her vision and adopting the same rigour for all areas of the education system, schools and FE. She announced a thematic curriculum review with the FE curriculum offer forming a major part to support the evolution of the pathways and T-Levels. She also discusses the English and Maths curricula, funding and area reviews. Her speech can be read at: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/amanda-spielmans-speech-at-the-association-of-colleges-ofsted-conference-a-new-direction. See also her maiden speech 'New HMCI vows to make sure Ofsted is regarded as a force for good' at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-hmci-vows-to-make-sure-ofsted-is-regarded-as-a-force-for-good
New GCSE 9 to 1 grades coming soon: Ofqual has published '9 things to know about the new GCSE grades'. Further details can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-gcse-9-to-1-grades-coming-soon
Ofqual postcards: GCSE, AS and A level reforms: A series of 'postcards' outlining the work Ofqual is doing, with an emphasis on current reforms to qualifications in England has been published at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/your-qualification-our-regulation-gcse-as-and-a-level-reforms
Ofqual response to Institute for Apprenticeships draft operational plan: Ofqual believe that the Institute, Ofqual and the other key partners in the system should work together to develop an appropriate external quality assurance landscape and provide this clarity as soon as possible. Their full response can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/ofqual-response-to-institute-for-apprenticeships-draft-operational-plan
Skills Funding Agency (SFA)
A guide to apprenticeships: March update: A guide to apprenticeships - provides information on the opportunities, progression and benefits of doing an apprenticeship with case studies from real apprentices. The latest guide can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-guide-to-apprenticeships. An updated guide to apprenticeships for parents can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-parents-guide-to-apprenticeships. An updated guide to apprenticeships for employers can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apprenticeships-guide-for-employers
Higher and degree apprenticeships: March update: Which? University, in conjunction with the National Apprenticeship Service, has published a new guide to higher and degree apprenticeships. Further details can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/higher-and-degree-apprenticeships#history
Apprenticeship funding bands: Sets out the funding bands that will apply for existing apprenticeship frameworks and apprenticeship standards. Further details can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apprenticeship-funding-bands
Advanced learner loans funding rules 2017 to 2018: This document sets out the rules for provision funded by learners through advanced learner loans. Further details at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/advanced-learner-loans-funding-rules-2017-to-2018
The 10th National Apprenticeship Week 2017 ends on a high: A Report on the events of the National Apprenticeship Week 2017 can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/the-10th-national-apprenticeship-week-2017-ends-on-a-high
Higher Education Funding Council for England
Universities and colleges receive £2.45 million to tackle sexual harassment: HEFCE has awarded grants to over 60 projects in universities and colleges across the country which address concerns about sexual violence and harassment on campus. Further details at: http://www.hefce.ac.uk/news/newsarchive/2017/Name,113072,en.html
Postgraduate and undergraduate student numbers at record highs: The number of students studying postgraduate courses in England has increased substantially in 2016-17, following the introduction of postgraduate masters loans. Further details at: http://www.hefce.ac.uk/news/newsarchive/2017/Name,113005,en.html
Professional Exchange to continue with five CPD events in 2017: We are pleased to say the Professional Exchange will continue this year, with five more CPD events to be held between now and the end of July. WMCETT is looking for ideas for subjects for the events, organisations which are willing to host and participants. Further details from Julie at J.Chamberlain@warwick.ac.uk. or on the website at:
Register interest in taking part in pilot Training for Further Education teacher trainer modules: WMCETT has won a tender from the ETF to produce a four-day CPD package for new and existing teacher educators who are working for providers delivering both HEI and Awarding Body initial teacher training. We have one course starting late in March and the other in June for participants teaching - or soon to teach - the DET, CDET or a subject specialist qualification. Register interest with Julie at J.Chamberlain@warwick.ac.uk
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: https://booking.etfoundation.co.uk/course/details/67?return=browse
Take part in FREE Functional Skills pilot In May and early June: WMCETT will be running free pilots of five-day Functional Mathematics and English CPD modules. The modules are aimed at those with little or no previous subject specific training in teaching mathematics or English – including vocational teachers and assessors who are being asked to teach functional skills for the first time. For an application form contact Julie at: J.Chamberlain@warwick.ac.uk
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 www.feweek.co.uk
Policy Watch, published by The Pearson Centre, has weekly updates on the latest educational initiatives and can be read at http://uk.pearson.com/home/policy-watch.html.