Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Making Sense of Functional Skills newsletter Jan 4th

January 4th - in this issue

The full details about the parallel running of Key Skills and Functional Skills in Apprenticeships, Functional Skills at BETT 2011 and news about My Functional Skills, a new diagnostic and assessment tool in Guroo 2.0.

Key Skills exemption extended but confirmation that Functional Skills is here to stay!

On 7th December, John Hayes (Skills Minister) wrote to ALP, TASSC, AoC and FAB following their representations about their members not being ready to implement Functional Skills in Apprenticeships. Whilst Functional Skills, GCSE (with enhanced functional content) and Key Skills will run in parallel until September 2012 for Apprenticeships only, it's clear that Functional Skills are the future. Three quotes we picked out ....

"I do remain committed to the principle that Apprenticeship frameworks should deliver Functional Skills. I do hope that you will continue to work with my officials, as a matter of urgency, to make progress towards resolving the issues."

"I confidently expect full implementation of Functional Skills in Apprenticeships from Sept 2012."

The request for research into Key Skills was flatly refused "Functional Skills is a different type of qualification altogether and I think that such research would have limited value."

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BETT 2011

The BETT Show is held at Olympia from Wednesday 12th to Saturday 15th January. We did a search of all exhibitors to see who was focusing on Functional Skills and Foundation Learning and the following companies came out on top:

  • Guroo - J11, National Hall Main Floor.
  • CIA Training - SW26, National Hall Gallery.
  • BKSB - T10, National Hall Gallery.
  • Creating Careers - SW4, National Hall Gallery
  • Amazing Interactives - L49, National Hall Main Floor.
  • Developing and Embedding ICT Functional Skills - presentation by Kathryn Tipper in Gallery 2 on Thursday at 5pm.
  • Making Sense of Functional Skills - presentation by Jonathan Wells in the Software theatre SW5 on Thursday at 1pmFacebook Twitter

My Functional Skills

My Functional Skills (TM) is a brand new feature of Guroo 2.0, developed in response to customers wanting tracking, reporting and diagnostic tools.

Every learning task and challenge in Guroo 2.0 is now tagged to the relevant Functional Skills criteria. At the end of each activity, students assess how their skills are developing.

These combine with the results from Functional Skills quiz questions, marks from teacher assessments and other inputs to give teachers a picture of activity and progress, and a diagnostic view of strengths and weaknesses.

And with top level results shown graphically as a series of "traffic lights" it's incredibly easy to use.

Click here for a short video - My Functional Skills is featured at 8:35.

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The next newsletter is scheduled for Tuesday January 18th - if you have any comments, suggestions or your own news that you'd like to publicise, just let me know.

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