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WMCOP Bulletin October 2017

Welcome to the October 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.

A lot has been happening in FE this month! The first new T levels have been announced, together with the T level action plan and post-16 skills plan. A report of the independent panel on technical education has been published together with the 'Technical education reform: the case for change' Policy Paper and the Education and Skills Funding Agency has announced a new 'Work Placement Capacity and Delivery Fund' to support the capacity building for T level work placements.

Justine Greening has announced a series of education measures including :raising the earning threshold for student loan repayments from £21,000 to £25,000, freezing tuition fees for 2018/19 and a boost for degree-apprenticeships with 27 new projects. She has also opened a new high speed rail college in Doncaster.

An Internet Safety Strategy green paper is out for consultation by 7 December, WorldSkills 2017 is taking place with Team UK, Ofqual has a new handbook and there are provisional statistics on GCSE and A level results.

In HE the University knowledge exchange is shown to be at the heart of the Industrial Strategy and there is analysis of the Teaching Excellence Framework outcomes.

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

Education Secretary announces first new T levels: Justine Greening has announced the first three T levels in Digital, Construction, and Education and Childcare. These are the first of the new qualifications and they will be taught from 2020, with the full set of T levels introduced by 2022. Further details can be found at: See also comments by FE Week at:

Post-16 skills plan and independent report on technical education: A Policy paper on the government’s technical education reforms, based on the work of Lord Sainsbury’s independent panel has been published. It includes:
'T level action plan’: the government’s progress on the reforms to technical education set out in ‘Post-16 skills plan’, confirms next steps and opportunities for engagement by interested parties
Post-16 skills plan’: the government’s plan to support young people and adults to secure skilled employment and meet the needs of the economy
Report of the independent panel on technical education’: report by an independent panel set up to advise ministers on improving the quality of technical education
Technical education reform: the case for change’: presents the available evidence on the government’s reforms
The Policy paper can be found at:

New education and skills measures announced: Justine Greening has announced a series of education measures to help provide opportunity for all. These include: raising the earning threshold for student loan repayments from £21,000 to £25,000 and freezing tuition fees for 2018/19; a boost for degree-apprenticeships with 27 new projects; and in schools, loan reimbursements for maths and MFL teachers in certain areas of the country and help for 'challenging' schools and an extension to the English and Maths Hub programme. Further details at:

Anne Milton supports Team UK at WorldSkills 2017: Anne Milton is in Abu Dhabi, supporting Team UK in the WorldSkills 2017 competition where the 34 members of Team UK are competing against more than 65 countries in 30 skills categories, including painting, hairdressing, mechatronics, engineering and cooking. Further details at:

Education Secretary opens new high speed rail college: Justine Greening helped launch the new National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR) in Doncaster. The college is the largest of five new national colleges created by the government to ensure young people can learn world-class technical skills, including, engineering, design, planning, manufacturing and construction. Further details can be found at:

Sir Theodore Agnew has been appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the School System: The Prime Minister has announced that Sir Theodore Agnew will take up a role as minister in the Lords at the Department for Education, following the retirement of Lord Nash. Further details at:

Internet Safety Strategy green paper: A Consultation on an Internet Safety Strategy closes on 7 December 2017. The Internet Safety Strategy looks at how we can ensure Britain is the safest place in the world to be online. The Strategy considers the responsibilities of companies to their users, the use of technical solutions to prevent online harms and government’s role in supporting users. The Consultation and Green Paper can be found at:

Further education and skills: October 2017: Statistics about learner participation, outcomes and highest qualification held in further education and skills, reported for October 2017 have been published. Statistics include: adult education, apprenticeships, English and maths, community learning, advanced learner loans, traineeships (aged 16 to 24), all age (aged 16 and over ) apprenticeships in England and the highest level of qualification held by adults (aged 19 to 64) in England. Statistics can be found at:

GCSE and equivalent results: 2016 to 2017 (provisional): Provisional statistics on the achievements of young people at the end of key stage 4 in England, in the 2016 to 2017 academic year have been published at:

A level and other 16 to 18 results: 2016 to 2017 (provisional): Provisional information on A level and other results for 16- to 18-year-olds at the end of their final year has been published at:

Experimental apprenticeships data visualisations: Experimental data visualisation applications based on published apprenticeships data can be found at:

Apprenticeship service registrations and commitments: August 2017: This release provides headline experimental statistics on the use of the apprenticeship service. These include apprenticeship service account registrations and numbers of commitments, where an apprentice who is expected to go on to start has been recorded in the system. It can be found at:

Basic need allocations: A Guidance note on how much basic need funding local authorities receive during the financial years 2011 to 2020 has been published at:

Participation in education and training: local authority figures: Databases showing the proportion of 16- and 17-year-olds in education and training have been published at:

16 to 19 qualifications, discount codes and point scores: Approved 16 to 19 qualifications and discount codes for reporting in the 2014 to 2019 school and college performance tables have been published at:

Teaching Excellence Framework: Lessons and outcomes: The following documents have been published:
Teaching Excellence Framework: lessons learned: Information about the development of the TEF and future refinements to the process has been published. This explains how evidence from the lessons learned exercise informs changes to the TEF specification. Further details can be found at:
Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework specification: Information about how the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF) will function has been published at:
Teaching Excellence Framework: analysis of final award: Research examining the relationships between providers, regions, student characteristics and the final TEF award, and if the assessment process was fair has been published at:
Teaching Excellence Framework: analysis of metrics: Research looking at whether the National Student Survey metrics have had a greater influence on the final award than other metrics has been published at:

Participation rates in higher education: 2006 to 2016: Statistics which include data on students who are: 17- to 30-years-old; in higher education (HE) for the first time; living in England; in UK HE institutions and English, Welsh and Scottish further education colleges; staying in HE for at least 6 months; have been published at:

Professional News

Education and Training Foundation

Cross-sector Training Needs Analysis: Sector bodies and the DfE have joined forces under the aegis of the ET Foundation to launch a major national exercise in finding out what teachers, trainers, leaders and institutions across the FE sector see as their training needs. The analysis will be carried out through two surveys with the findings published in early 2018. A telephone survey will explore training needs from the perspective of organisations, while an online survey via email will explore training needs from the perspective of individuals. The survey can be found at: and further details are at:

Online tool launched for potential end-point assessors: A new online tool for practitioners thinking of becoming an end-point assessor for apprenticeships has been developed as part of the Future Apprenticeships programme. Further details at:

Maths and English Shaping Success campaign: The ETF are offering over 20 different courses to support effective teaching of maths and English for teachers of GCSE, Functional Skills, apprenticeships and study programmes as part of the national Shaping Success campaign. Further details are at: See also WMCETT courses at:


The Ofqual handbook is now live: Ofqual has published a preview version of the Ofqual handbook, a new online resource that brings together all their general rules and guidance. The handbook can be found at, as well as from the Ofqual homepage and our awarding organisation portal. Further details are at:

Students' subject choices at GCSE and A level: New research looks at whether perceptions of difficulty affect subject choices. It concluded that 'The main conclusion drawn from this research was that subject choices appear to be primarily driven by a triad of perceptions: enjoyment, usefulness and difficulty (with perceptions being mostly person-specific). Although perceptions of difficulty did have an influence on subject choices, they are perhaps the lesser of these three concerns.' The report can be found at:


University knowledge exchange at the heart of the Industrial Strategy: Knowledge exchange activity on the part of UK universities continued to grow in 2015-16. Income from knowledge exchange in England grew by 3 per cent, with income across the UK reaching a record £4.2 billion in total, according to HEFCE’s annual ‘Higher Education – Business and Community Interaction’ report. Further details at:,115846,en.html

Analysis shows value of innovative development projects in higher education: A review of a HEFCE programme which funds development projects in the higher education sector has found significant benefits for students, the economy and society, with funding expected to return up to £12 in value for every pound invested. Further details at:,115847,en.html

Universities and colleges receive £1.8 million to tackle hate crime and online harassment: Over 40 universities and colleges in England have been awarded funding totalling £1.8 million from HEFCE for projects to improve responses to hate crime and online harassment on campus. Further details at:,115884,en.html

Education and Skills Funding Agency

Work placements – capacity and delivery fund from April 2018 to July 2019: The CDF will be available from April 2018 to facilitate the build-up of capacity and capability to deliver substantive work placements and deliver placements in the 2018 to 2019 academic year. The placements are for students on vocational and technical study programmes at level 2 and level 3. It is recognised that the delivery of significant work placements as part of T levels will be a significant step change for the sector. This is why this funding is being provided now to help build capacity ahead of the roll out of T levels, from 2020. Further details at:
Work Placement Capacity and Delivery Fund: principles for high quality work placements: A Guidance document for this fund has been published at:
FE Week: T-levels funded work placement plans criticised. Read article at:

Register of apprenticeship training providers: The register of apprenticeship training providers (RoATP) is now open for applications and closes at 5pm on Friday, 3 November. To be eligible to deliver apprenticeship training for apprenticeships that start on 1 May 2017, or after, organisations must be listed on the register of apprenticeship training providers (RoATP). Further details at:

Midlands' top apprentices and apprentice employers announced: Regional winners have been announced at the Midlands celebration of the National Apprenticeship Awards 2017. 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 Articles include:

Emotions high as Team UK competitors complete their work: Pictures and comments from Team UK at the World Skills Competition can be found at:

Concern at negative impact of FE loans on disadvantaged: A government report has investigated the impact of the government’s FE reform agenda. Comments from FE Week can be read at:

Support Our Sixth-formers: DfE urged to redirect 16-19 underspend: The 16-to-19 education budget was underspent by £106 million last year, and campaigners now want the DfE to direct the money back to colleges. Read the article at: See also
College leaders beg Theresa May for more 16-to-19 funding: Article at:

Apprenticeships are “fragile” training, research shows: Relying on employer involvement makes apprenticeships a “fragile” form of training, according to new research. Read the article at:

DfE ‘watching it closely’ as management becomes England’s second most popular apprenticeship subject: According to statistics released by the DfE, the management framework had 46,640 new starters in 2016/17 and it has narrowly overtaken the business administration framework in popularity, while health and social care still reigns supreme with more than 85,000 new starters last year. Read the article at:

First official apprenticeship levy figures show a 61% fall in starts: Provisional figures published by the DfE, as part of the Statistical First Release, include the apprenticeship starts after the levy system began on the 1 May. "...... Apprenticeship starts have decreased to 43,600 from 113,000 over the same period in the year before (quarter 4 of the 2015/16 academic year), a decrease of 61%.” Read the article at:

T-level priority panel chairs revealed: Fifteen names of people who will chair and co-chair the so-called “priority” panels were published this morning, alongside details of the first three subjects that will be delivered by 2020, and the T-level action plan (see DfE above). Read the article at:


Maths and English resilience courses available for hosting now: WMCETT's contract with the ETF to run more subsidised one-day introduction to mathematical and English resilience courses around the country, and also three-day introduction to coaching skills for maths/English resilience has been extended until April 2018 and WMCETT are now inviting organisations to get in touch if they would like to host a course - for as little as FIVE of your own staff. There is more information at: 

Training for further education teacher trainers: Do you teach the DET, CET or Award, or planning to soon? A new Education and Training Foundation-funded 4-day module starts in November at Warwick University, which is aimed at enhancing the quality of initial teacher education (ITE). It has been created by WMCETT and the Initial Teacher Training team at the University, and will be run by them. Further details at: