First cross-sector opportunity for teachers, trainers and leaders to have their say in a major sector-led systematic Training Needs Analysis

Sector bodies and the Department for Education (DfE) have joined forces under the aegis of the Education and Training Foundation to launch a major national exercise in finding out what teachers, trainers, leaders and institutions across the Further Education (FE) and Training sector see as their training needs. The Training Need Analysis is being conducted by the ETF, in partnership with the Association of Colleges (AoC), Association of Employer and Learning Providers (AELP) and HOLEX.

This is the first time the sector has undertaken such systematic research of this scale, engaging with every level of the workforce. The Training Needs Analysis will provide crucial baseline data to ensure future training for teachers and trainers is aligned with their professional needs and priorities. The analysis will be carried out through two surveys with a target of several thousand responses, and the findings will be published in early 2018.

A telephone survey will explore training needs from the perspective of organisations within the sector, while an online survey via email will explore training needs from the perspective of individuals. The survey can be found at: www.etftrainingsurvey.co.uk.

This will be a robust and holistic assessment of the system and the data will be used to inform future priorities for the ETF, sector bodies and the government as well as inform discussions with devolved authorities, individual training providers, and employers.

Organisations will be selected to take part in the telephone survey on a randomised basis4 over the next few weeks. Everyone working in the FE sector can take part in the online survey.

David Russell, Chief Executive of the Education and Training Foundation, said: “This cross-sector collaboration shows the depth of commitment to ensuring the CPD that teachers and trainers receive actually meets their needs, their learners’ needs and the needs of the country. Given the centrality of our sector in a post-Brexit Britain, we require a profession with the right knowledge and expertise our country needs. This analysis is on a different scale of ambition and impact to what we have done before – with systematic analysis that will inform our future direction and give sector leaders a much richer insight into the opportunities and challenges we face together.”

David Hughes, Chief Executive of Association of Colleges, said: “Attracting and retaining excellent teaching staff is of critical importance to colleges. One of the components of that is to understand their skills and abilities and to offer great training and development opportunities. This work will give us an overview which we can use to develop CPD and training which maintains and enhances the quality of people teaching in colleges. I’m delighted that the whole post-16 sector is coming together to identify the needs of staff and work collaboratively to tackle this. The true beneficiaries will be the students who will receive the best training from a highly skilled college workforce.”

Mark Dawe, Chief Executive of Association of Employment and Learning Providers, said: “AELP is pleased to be part of this work and would encourage independent training providers to take part so that their needs are fully represented in the final analysis and clearly understood. There is much that the sector stills need to do in this aspect of the apprenticeship reforms, building on the excellent foundations of the Future Apprenticeships programme, and also to get ready for the roll-out of T-levels.”

Sue Pember OBE, Director of Policy and External Affairs for HOLEX, said: “HOLEX and the adult learning providers it represents are very pleased to be part of this initiative. This is the first time the whole sector has come together to undertake this much needed piece of research. The adult education workforce is well qualified and very student/trainee centred. However, are they prepared for the future? The new post Brexit landscape will increase the need for adult training, and the requirement of implementing all the new Government policy changes will put pressure on the system. We need to know what challenges our staff have and invest in their professional development.”

If you have any questions about the survey or how the findings will be used, contact Charlynne Pullen on charlynne.pullen@etfoundation.co.uk.

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