Led by Nigel Whitehead, UKCES Commissioner and Group Managing Director, BAE Systems plc this review states that it “forges a new vision for adult vocational qualifications which puts employers and employees first. For individuals to have the skills to succeed and for businesses to flourish, vocational qualifications should be:
- Relevant to individuals and employers, and affordable for all sizes of business (including micro-businesses) and for individuals
- Rigorous and based on a robust future-looking occupational standard, designed and assessed by the sector
- Recognised as worthy of investment, giving a clear signal of the economically-valuable skills, knowledge and understanding required in an occupation now and into the future
The review recommends seven practical steps to achieve this vision:
- Better employer involvement with awarding organisations and providers
- Focus on outcomes for more flexibility
- New design principles for qualifications
- Mandatory reporting on progression
- Joined-up qualifications databases
- Incentivised use of technology
- Better employer input through industrial partnerships
The golden thread running through these recommendations is the advocating of a partnership approach – one which connects employers and unions with well-regulated awarding organisations and flexible training providers in the design, development and
Ofqual have announced the Design details of new GCSEs in England.
A report from the expert panel on core mathematics to the Department for Education, October 2013.
expert panel on core mathematics report Oct13
The 157 Group has published Pedagogic leadership, a ‘think piece’ written in partnership with City & Guilds and the Centre for Real World Learning at the University of Winchester about vocational pedagogy and how to create cultures that promote top-quality teaching and learning.
DfE announcement. From 29 September 2013 a pupil’s first entry in a particular subject will count towards the school’s performance tables.
These changes apply to GCSEs, level 1/level 2 certificates (sometimes referred to as IGCSEs), BTECs and other qualifications, where those would ‘discount’ against GCSEs in performance tables. The first entry across the subject, regardless of qualification type, will be the one that counts. Not all level 1/level 2 certificates count in performance tables and unregulated IGCSEs do not count. That position is unchanged.
The National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) is reporting (on behalf of the DfE) on ESOL learners’ progression to Functional Skills Englishand GCSE English language qualifications. If you are an ESOL and/or English provider funded by the Skills Funding Agency, you are invited to take part in this call for information.
If you are an ESOL and/or English provider funded by the Skills Funding Agency, NIACE invite you to take part in this call for information.
Online survey or contact Alex Stevenson
Senior Project Officer
0116 204 4247
The national curriculum programmes of study and attainment targets for mathematics at key stages 1 to 3 can be found on gov.uk To be taught from September 2014.
Key Stage 4 is out for public consultation.
8 October 2013 – Government announced new high-quality maths qualifications will allow thousands more pupils to study the subject from age 16 to 18, Education Minister Elizabeth Truss.
The OECD research show a number of interesting findings for example:
- a quarter of adults in England have the maths skills of a 10-year-old.
- about 8.5 million adults, 24.1% of the population, have such basic levels of numeracy that they can manage only one-step tasks in arithmetic, sorting numbers or reading graphs. This is worse than the average in the developed world, where an average of 19% of people were found to have a similarly poor skill base.
- out of 24 nations, young adults in England (aged 16-24) rank 22nd for literacy and 21st for numeracy. England is behind Estonia, Australia, Poland and Slovakia in both areas.
The Guardian has a useful summary of the findings
Government urged to name and shame employers that exploit cheap labour
Almost a third of apprentices were paid less than the legal minimum wage in 2012, according to official figures published by the government.
The Apprenticeship Pay Survey revealed that 29 per cent of apprentices were paid less than legally required in 2012, while the number of apprentices who were underpaid had increased by 45 per cent from 2011.
However, in areas of work such as child care, underpayment rose by 65 per cent, while seven out of ten hairdressing apprentices received less than they were entitled to. Apprentices in the construction industry were also among those worst affected with two-fifths receiving less than the minimum wage rate.
“Apprentice exploitation is getting worse across the board. In some industries, such as hairdressing, abuse has become endemic. Ministers must launch investigations now into this abuse,” said TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady.
“This survey also reveals a number of systematic failures in the way apprenticeship pay is being monitored. There are plenty of bad bosses who have deliberately cheated young workers. And it appears many businesses do not understand how minimum wage rates work.”
The TUC has urged the government to do more to make employers aware of their responsibilities, as well as naming, shaming and persecuting rogue employers.
In August the government announced changes to the law to make identifying employers who fail to pay the correct minimum wage easier. This change came into force on 1st October 2013.
Between 2012 and 2013 HMRC identified 736 employers who failed to comply with NMW consequently leading to the recovery of £3.9 million in unpaid wages for more than 26,500 workers.
Under the revised rules, rogue employers not only risk reputational damage but can incur additional fines of up to £5,000 and may even face civil or criminal action from HMRC.
National Minimm wage rates from 1st of October 2013
As per CIPD 8 Oct 2013.