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WMCOP Bulletin May 2018

Welcome to the May 2018 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.

T Levels are the main feature this month. In response to the T Level Consultation, the DfE has responded by giving more support for work placements, funding the English and Maths elements and changing the grading structure. The programme will also be rolled out more slowly with 3 qualification routes starting in 2020 and the rest in 2023. A Policy Paper on the 3 programmes which start in 2020 has been published and the content is open for consultation but only until 4 June. The 3 programmes are: digital; construction and education and childcare. A list of providers who have been selected to deliver T Levels in academic year 2020 to 2021 has been published by the Education and Skills Funding Agency together with Information for post 16 providers on the next steps towards delivery of T Levels.

On apprenticeships, the DfE has published a benefits realisation strategy setting out its aims for the reform programme and a progress report with indicators for success. Care leavers and young people with additional needs will be given more support for apprenticeships.

Strengthened guidance on safeguarding, and advice on how to prevent and respond to reports of sexual violence and harassment between children have been published by the DfE. There is a new GCSE grading factsheet and resource for teachers on the new GCSEs and Ofsted has revised leaflets on both full and short inspections in the further education and skills sector.

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 Education

Introduction of T Levels: A Policy Paper has been published on the Introduction of T Levels which are due to be introduced from the academic year 2020 to 2021. The paper explains: what they are; how and when they will be introduced; what they will cover; how qualifications will be awarded and how education providers can get involved in delivery. Further details at:

Implementation of T Level programmes: The DfE has responded to the Consultation on T Level programmes. They will be adjusting their approach to T Level design and implementation to take the views received into account b
awarding an overall Pass grade for T Levels so it is clear to employers that a student has successfully completed all components of the programme.
provide additional support to enable T Level industry placements to be successfully delivered, including widening the remit of the NAS.
fund maths and English for students who have not yet achieved level 2 in addition to the hours required for the other parts of the course
work closely with providers delivering the first T Levels to co-create the programmes and to address the delivery concerns raised by respondents
A 3 month placement with an external employer will be an essential part of each T Level which will be known as ‘T Level industry placements’. Further information can be found at:

T Level Consultation: A Consultation is open until 4 June on the content of the first 3 programmes: digital, construction and education and childcare. The content and consultation is being led by the Institute for Apprenticeships and can be found at:

Apprenticeship reform programme: benefits realisation strategy: This Policy paper sets out the DfE aims for apprenticeship reform and summarises how this will benefit employers and apprentices. Further details at:

Progress report on the Apprenticeships Reform Programme: This strategy outlines a range of high-level indicators of success for the programme, measured in positive results for participants. Further details can be found at:

New support for young care leavers starting an apprenticeship: Care leavers who choose to start an apprenticeship will receive a £1000 bursary to help the transition into the workplace. The extra financial support will be for those aged 16-24 and help them in the first year of their apprenticeship. It is part of the new funding bands which commence in August 2018. Further details can be found at:

Exploring funding for apprentices with additional needs: Research into the effectiveness of funding to support apprentices with learning difficulties, disabilities or disadvantage has been published. This report identifies areas to consider in the future development of apprenticeships funding policy and it can be found at:

Apprenticeship funding from August 2018: How apprenticeship funding for employers will work, including details of funding bands and the apprenticeship levy. Updated funding information can be found at:

GCSE new grading scale: factsheets: Information about the new GCSE grades for parents, employers and further and higher education providers has been updated to include the new GCSEs being sat this year. Further details at:

New gold-standard GCSEs prepare pupils for careers Britain needs: Students across the country prepare to take 20 new GCSE exams this week. Further details at:

Post 16: basic maths premium pilot: A pilot testing the impact of additional funding, in improving the quality of teaching and learning of maths, leading to better student outcomes. The basic maths premium pilot will be open to post-16 providers based in selected areas. The pilot will run from autumn 2018 for 2 years for the academic year 2018 to 2019 cohort.

Boost for maths education in the North for National Numeracy Day: £6 million boost to improve maths literacy in the Northern Powerhouse, creating maths hubs for schools. Further details can be found at:

Strengthened guidance for schools and colleges on safeguarding: New guidance for schools and colleges on how to keep children safe, including advice on how to support young victims of sexual violence and harassment has been published at:

Sexual violence and sexual harassment between children in schools and colleges: Advice for schools and colleges on how to prevent and respond to reports of sexual violence and harassment between children. This guidance covers: what sexual violence and harassment is; schools’ and colleges’ legal responsibilities; a whole school or college approach to safeguarding and child protection and how to respond to reports of sexual violence and sexual harassment. Further details can be found at:

Level 2 and 3 attainment by young people aged 19 in 2017: Statistics showing the attainment of young people aged 19 in the 2016 to 2017 academic year have been published at:

16 to 18 accountability headline measures: Guide for schools, colleges and local authorities on new measures in the 2017 to 2018 performance tables. The 5 new headline measures in the performance tables covering 16 to 18 education in 2017 and 2018 are: progress, attainment, progress in English and maths, retention and destinations. The technical guide explains how the headline measures are calculated. There’s also information about 16 to 18 progress score bandings in the school and college performance tables. Further information can be found at:

Post-16 education: highest level of achievement by age 25: Research showing how a group of school leavers progressed through post-16 education and into the labour market has been published at:

UKCES Employer Skills Survey 2015: England and local toolkit: National and local level results and data tables for England from the UKCES Employer Skills Survey 2015. This includes results from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills’ (UKCES) Employer Skills Survey 2015 for England and at the local level. The survey provides a comprehensive picture of skills needs and training investment, including vacancies and skills shortages, employee skill gaps and the recruitment of education leavers and young people. It can be found at:

Department for Education Areas of Research Interest: This publication sets out areas where DfE is interested in more research and new evidence. The report can be found at:

Supporting mental health in schools and colleges: Survey and case studies with schools on activities to support pupils' mental health and wellbeing have been published at:

Education Secretary marks Mental Health Awareness Week in Hastings: Damian Hinds visited Sussex Coast College in Hastings to learn about the mental health support services available through the Opportunity Area programme. Further details at:

Sam Gyimah hosts free speech summit: Universities minister calls on higher education leaders to work together to create new guidance on free speech. His speech can be read at:

Funding: initial teacher training (ITT), academic year 2018 to 19: May update includes Troops to Teaching. Funding guidance for schools and ITT providers for 2018 to 2019, including bursaries, scholarships and School Direct (salaried) grants. Further information at:

Strengthening qualified teacher status and career progression: The DfE response to their consultation on strengthening QTS and CPD in schools has been published. It covers: how to support teachers at the beginning of their career; how newly qualified teachers (NQTs) embed the skills and knowledge from their initial teacher training (ITT) and how to improve career progression for teachers, focusing on improving progression opportunities for all teachers throughout their careers. Further details can be found at:

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

200,000 receive back pay as HMRC enforces National Minimum Wage: BEIS and HMRC launch campaign urging underpaid workers to complain as figures show that the number of workers getting the money they're owed has doubled. Further information at:

Good work: the Taylor review of modern working practices: An independent review of modern working practices by Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the Royal Society of Arts. his independent review considers the implications of new forms of work on worker rights and responsibilities, as well as on employer freedoms and obligations. It sets out 7 principles to address the challenges facing the UK labour market. Further information at:

Professional News

Education and Training Foundation

The Voices of the Further Education Sector: The purpose of the Further Education Sector Now?: A group of education leaders have collected, edited and published a series of articles to capture the voices of leaders within the Further Education sector. The report can be read at:

More funding available for the OTLA programme in technical skills: further £90,000 is available through the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) for three new joint-practice development projects under the Outstanding, Teaching, Learning and Assessment’s (OTLA) National Technical Skills Programme. Further details at:

ETF relaunches bitesize digital courses: The ETF has this week relaunched seven free, online CPD courses that will help teachers and trainers more fully apply digital tools in the classroom. The newly updated courses will run for the next four weeks, and then repeat again each month for the next year. The seven courses are: Social media in teaching and learning; Virtual meeting technology; Video learning; Assessment for learning; Digital skills for the work place; Using technology for differentiation and An introduction to digital content design and creation. Further details at:

SET opens next application window for Advanced Teacher Status: Applications open until 31 July 2018. Further details at:

Maths for Life Trials – Do you want to take part?: the Centre for Research in Mathematics Education at the University of Nottingham are now recruiting colleges to take part in the Maths-for-life randomised controlled trial. Applications are open to one, or two, teachers from colleges and the intervention will start in the next academic year at no cost. Further details at:

Training Needs Analysis report: A focus on leadership and management, English, maths and digital skills are needed to take the FE profession forward with confidence through the current set of reforms – this is the primary conclusion of the landmark analysis of the training needs for the Further Education (FE) and Training sector. Further details at:


Inspecting further education and skills: leaflet for providers: This leaflet outlines what Ofsted will look at during an inspection of a further education and skills provider. The leaflet can be found at:

Short inspections of further education and skills: leaflet for providers: This leaflet outlines what Ofsted will look at during a short inspection of a further education and skills provider. The leaflet can be found at:

Ofsted research on lesson observation models: This paper discusses 6 lesson observation models presented at an international Ofsted seminar in 2017. It can be found at:

Ofsted launches point-in-time surveys: Surveys for residential special schools and further education colleges with residential provision are now open for children, learners, parents and residential staff. Further details can be found at:


Entries for GCSE, AS and A level: summer 2018 exam series: Number of provisional entries by age group and subject for GCSEs, Level 1/ Level 2, AS and A levels in England for the summer 2018 exam series. Further details at:

Letter to schools and colleges - summer 2018: A letter to schools and colleges with a link to provisional entry statistics and what to expect regarding the reformed GCSEs, AS and A levels, Applied Generals and Tech levels has been published at:

External quality assurance of end-point assessments: status: A table shows which apprenticeship EPAs Ofqual has agreed to regulate and the status of those under review. It can be found at:

Qualifications reform: resources for teachers: A pack of slides with information from Ofqual and the Department for Education that teachers can use to explain the reforms to parents has been published at:

Evaluation of qualifications reform: Research papers from Ofqual and QCA looking at the reform of qualifications have been published at:

Education and Skills Funding Agency

Providers selected to deliver T Levels in academic year 2020 to 2021: A list of providers who have been selected to deliver T Levels in academic year 2020 to 2021 has been published at:

T Levels: next steps for providers: Information for post 16 providers on the next steps towards delivery of T Levels including: Outline content; Providers delivering T Levels in the 2020 to 2021 academic year; Change to the Construction route T Level for the 2020 to 2021 academic year and Providers delivering T Levels in the 2021 to 2022 academic year. Further details can be found at:

16 to 18 minimum standards: This document describes how the DfE is applying 16 to 18 minimum standards to the performance of schools and colleges in the 2016 to 2017 academic year. By establishing separate measures for performance in level 3 academic, applied general and tech level qualifications, they can compare like with like to give a clear picture of how institutions are performing in different areas of their level 3 provision. Further details at:

A parent’s guide to apprenticeships: Updated information for parents about the benefits of apprenticeships and the opportunities they provide has been published at:

Higher and degree apprenticeships: Updated information for young people on the opportunities, progression and benefits of doing a higher or degree apprenticeship has been published at:

T Level data collection guidance 2018: Guidance for preparing to complete the T Level readiness data collection exercise has been published 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 Articles include:
T-level full roll-out delayed until 2023, DfE confirms at:
Final Institutes of Technology shortlist announced at:
Nine things we learned from the DfE’s T-levels response at:
AoC’s new president wants to give learners their voice at:
T-level content published – but 5 day consultation deadline branded ‘staggering’ at:
Ofsted to win apprenticeship money and power at:
Universities battle with IfA over degree funding cuts at:
Damian Hinds refuses permanent secretary’s request to delay T-levels at:


West Midlands Professional Exchange 2018: The 2018 Professional Exchange will give participating organisations and their staff an outstanding opportunity to learn from and with other organisations through a programme of joint practice development; by implementing current research findings and methodologies; by taking supported risks in trying out new techniques, and by sharing existing effective practice, including from other regions and sectors.

Four initial meetings of Subject Groups in the areas of maths, English, SEND and IT have now taken place, and more Subject and Thematic groups have been set up as a result of these. There is still time to become involved in this round of meetings, if you move fast - for more information see:

or contact WMCETT Project Manager Julie Chamberlain at