Monday, 21 November 2016

Compulsory maths to age 18 - good idea?

Newsletter for post 16 maths and English

For many it is,but for certain categories of learners, it isn't and they face these issues.

  • A significant problem area in GCSE is understanding and applying interest rates. Too many learners fail to attempt these questions leading to significant deficiencies in financial numeracy, even where learners pass GCSE at grade C.
  • Too much focus at secondary school is applied to "passing GCSE" rather than numeracy to support an active citizenship life.
  • 88% of learners who do not achieve level 4 in their SATS at age 11 will go on to fail GCSE.
  • A learner who has failed GCSE resit more than twice is very unlikely to be engaged and motivated to pass in the future.
  • GCSE Maths is an abstract concept - it is complex maths in a simple context. Whereas real life problems almost always demand simple and straightforward maths in a complex context

Monday, 24 October 2016

AoC and AELP statements

AoC and AELP statements - helping influence Government spending
The autumn statement by the chancellor is a time when policy statements either stay statements or get an allocated budget for implementation.

It sets the theme for Government spending and is influenced by many things. Both the AELP (on behalf of more than 800 training providers) and AoC (on behalf of colleges) have published their "pre-autumn statement" statement.

The AoC has two key recommendations amongst many other ideas. They are:

  • HM Treasury should set a medium-term target to increase spending on education and training to 5% of GDP and direct a share of the additional funding to post-16 education.
  • The management of education spending should be reformed to improve efficiency, to allocate funds to areas of greatest need and to provide more predictability.
AELP have prepapred a two page, used at the recent party conferences to outline the main concerns of the training provider sector.

I think it's fair to say the neither are earth shattering but they are worth a read to see how the key sector organisations are thinking as we head towards things like levy implementation in 2017.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Useful videos for tutors of ENGLISH AND MATHS

Latest videos for supporting Functional Skills

These are a selection of "non-ForSkills" videos that we think are useful and crucially, up to date and relevant following the Ofqual review of the exam boards last year.

Welcome to Functional Skills English - a 2 minute animated video that is good to show learners what the Functional Skills curriculum is all about.

Embedding maths in your teaching - a 7 minute animated video that covers examples from several vocational areas.

How to pass English Reading Level 2 - broadly based on the latest Edexcel specification, but relevant across the wider spectrum, a longer 12 minute video that will help tutors prepare their learners.

How the on-line ICT assessment works - a 12 minute demo/webinar video based on the new specification from NCFE.

CPD webinars for tutors of English and maths in Apprenticeships

CPD webinars for those supporting English and maths in Apprenticeships
The ETF, AELP and CETT Academy are running a series of low cost webinars covering key areas of support for English and maths including:
  • Engagement
  • Contextualisation and embedding
  • Learner anxiety and resistance
  • Employer support
  • Mentoring and motivating

Planning delivery

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Roadshow events in November for Functional Skills

What would you like to see at the ForSkills/NCFE regional roadshows
We are planning a rolling programme of roadshow events with the first set scheduled for the week of November 21st. We'll be visiting three locations around the country during the week and we'll be inviting customers as well as those looking to upgrade to SkillsBuilder and SkillsPortfolio.

Each event will feature a range of highly engaging activities including:

  • Hands on with the customer engagement team
  • Making your investment go further - ensuring that your investment is delivering maximum benefit and value for money
  • Learning from others - case study experience.
We'll have a range of subject and qualification experts at each event, but here's the crunch - what would make this event even more valuable for you? Please tell us what you would like to see at the regional roadshows by emailing me direct.

English and maths post-16 related events

Things are starting to get going on the events front so time for a quick update:

Week of November 21st - ForSkills/NCFE regional roadshow
October 27th, Coventry, Apprenticeship Levy Conference
November 28th, London, Vocational Education
December 9th, London, Post-16 Maths and English

GCSE 9-1 assessments

GCSE 1-9 Assessments
The sharp-eyed (mainly colleges) amongst our customers will have seen that the assessments for GCSE now cover the new 1-9 curriculum with even the initial assessment producing a spiky profile and overall level for guidance.

As with ALL assessments from ForSkills, and unlike other providers, our assessment system is fully adaptive so learners are not asked irrelevant questions at the wrong level plus all our questions are taken from a bank.

Why is this important? It means that learners sitting next to each other never get the same questions AND when the same learner repeats the assessment to measure progression, it's a different test!

ForSkills SkillsBuilder - simple, straightforward, fair and reasonable, that’s what we‘re trying to achieve in helping you upgrade to SkillsBuilder.

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