Our Impact Stories

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Supporting teachers and trainers across the Further Education and Training sector on their professional journey

Everything we do at the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) is about supporting teachers and trainers across the Further Education (FE) and Training sector on their professional journey so that together we can provide the best learning experience to students and learners.  

This is just a small selection of stories taken from across the wide range of programmes we offer – with people describing the difference we are making in their own words.

You can read more about our achievements in our latest impact report and you can also read more of our case studies.


Diversity in Leadership programme

hexagon icon diversity in leadership

Our wide range of Leadership Development programmes, funded by the Department for Education, have been developed with key experts in the sector and from the world of leadership management. These programmes aim to ensure that today’s sector leaders have the skills and development opportunities they need.  We are so proud of the achievements of our award-winning Diversity in Leadership programme, just one example of the programmes we offer to support tomorrow’s FE sector leaders.

WorldSkills UK EDI Initiative of the Year: Diversity in Leadership programme

Learn more about our Diversity in Leadership programme from the short film shown as part of the WorldSkills UK EDI Initiative of the Year award.

Diversity in Leadership testimonial: Ellisha Soanes

Ellisha Soanes, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator and Lecturer in Health and Social Care, West Suffolk College

“Starting off a lecturer now to where I am in the last 18 months, it’s been really amazing. It was really fundamental and the starting point was getting that support with the ETF and the training programmes. It’s about how you look at your own perceptions and when it comes to equality and diversity, how you can change and be a game changer in your own sector.”

Diversity in Leadership testimonial: Kam Nandra

Kam Nandra, Director, Nandra Consultancy

“I found out about the ETF diversity in leadership programme from one of my colleagues… they said it might have been of interest to me. The main thing I got from the programme is a set of skills that I can use across the work that I do. The skills I have learnt are about empowering the people I work with. It’s about being inquisitive. It’s about asking the right questions, rather than always providing the solutions. The other thing I have learnt is that equality and diversity aren’t things that sit outside day-to-day work. They shouldn’t be a separate part of quality assurance, it should be everything we do.”

T-Level Professional Development

hexagon icon two women trainingThe T Level Professional Development (TLPD) offer from the ETF has been commissioned by the Department for Education and developed with experts in collaboration with learning providers and employers, to support you. Our offer is a rich mix of live online and face-to-face workshops, e-learning resources, mentoring, networking, and industry collaboration. At the core is a range of subject specific training which provides practical help to everyone involved in the planning and delivery of T Levels.

La Retraite TLPD Experience

In this video, staff and students from La Retraite Roman Catholic Girls’ School tell us about their T Level experience, and how the ETF’s T Level Professional Development offer has helped with T Level preparation and delivery.

TLPD testimonial: Katy Walsh

Katy Walsh, Lead Practitioner for Digital, La Retraite

“The ETF provides lots of professional development opportunities for teachers to help them deliver the T-Level. The thing I found most memorable from the ETF training was the industry insight day because I was on a construction site, I was up a skyscraper at Canary Wharf, I am learning about the technologies that they use and that is something I would never normally do in my day-to-day working life. I got to see how the programmes that we might think about developing in class would be used in the workplace.”

TLPD testimonial: Shechinah

Shechinah, T Level Digital Student, La Retraite

“I achieved the grades I wanted and I also got the uni I wanted, and I am still loving the course and I have got a new passion which I am really happy about. I am excited to see where that will take me!”

Taking Teaching Further (TTF)

hexagon icon taking teaching further

The Taking Teaching Further programme is a national initiative to attract experienced business and industry professionals to teach in Further Education. First launched in 2018, Taking Teaching Further is the Government’s flagship FE recruitment programme. So far, the TTF programme has supported over 700 business and industry professionals to train as FE teachers.

TTF testimonial: Jenny Lea

Jenny Lea, Practical Lecturer in Animal Studies

“I always feel very supported being on the TTF programme I have thoroughly enjoyed the first few months of teaching and believe that this is because of the time I have been given to plan and complete work and the support I have access to.”

Read Jenny’s full Q&A


TTF testimonial: Simon Bigrigg

Simon Bigrigg, Head of the Teacher Academy at East Kent College Group

“There’s a gap in terms of recruitment for certain hard-to-fill vacancies which need industry skills and experience, especially for the technical routes. At the time, we were looking around for projects we could get involved in and Taking Teaching Further came along. It was a perfect fit, so we grabbed the opportunity with both hands.”

Read Simon’s full Q&A

TTF testimonial: Nicki Kelly

Nicki Kelly, Assistant Principal for Curriculum at South Essex College

“Let me give you an example on how impactful the TTF programme has been. In September we launched the Digital T Level. One of our earliest Taking Teaching Further recruits who has just completed his teaching qualification is now leading on that T Level because he’s got the most up-to-date industry knowledge and skills. He’s upskilling and supporting our other computing staff as well as the learners.”

Read Nicki’s full Q&A

Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)

hexagon icon sustainabilityThe Education and Training Foundation recognises the vital role the Further Education and Training sector has to play in combating climate change and achieving sustainability and social justice both nationally and globally.

View our ESD case studies in full

ESD testimonial: Lee Barber

Lee Barber, Broadcast Journalism Lecturer, Barnsley college

“Charlotte Bonner’s session was a big eye opener about how we can successfully integrate sustainability not only into our own lives, but into the workings of our curriculum to impact our student’s behaviour and attitudes. Charlotte was more than happy to discuss afterwards how they could closer with our department, which will hopefully manifest into some exciting opportunities for our learners.” 

ESD testimonial: Almedina Kahrimonovic

Almedina Kahrimonovic, tutor at Thurrock Adult Community College

“I have been attending some of your great webinars recently which were very inspirational for me… I am trying to integrate ESD in my learning program whenever possible. You have inspired me to approach my managers asking them to implement teaching about environmental issues across the college in all programmes. I would like to thank you for inspiring me and also to congratulate you for your work at ETF.”


hexagon icon qtls

We are so proud of our growing community of FE and training professionals who commit to their professional development through achieving Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) and Advanced Teacher Status (ATS). Recognised across the education sector, and maintained through membership to the Society for Education and Training, they offer an opportunity to advance your career and demonstrate your expertise and commitment.

QTLS testimonial: Yasmin Manjra

Yasmin Manjra, QTLS Learner

“Once I got into the flow of things, the QTLS journey was really good. I felt fully supported by the team at SET, as well as by the staff and learners at my college. Undertaking QTLS has opened my eyes up to the wider teaching profession, and since doing it I have wanted to take my career forward and go into research in education.”

Read more of our QTLS stories

ATS testimonial: Sally Richards

Sally Richards, GCSE English Lecturer at Hartpury College

“ATS has improved my confidence in my roles as a teacher and as a Teaching, Learning and Assessment Coach, in which I deliver CPD to the staff body. I have used my knowledge of current education debate and discussion to encourage staff to participate, and I have used my research as grounding for my delivery of CPD sessions.  I have been able to share the results of my project and benefits of technology report with my colleagues, which has strengthened our department.”

Read more of our ATS stories

Professional Standards

hexagon icon professional standards

The Professional Standards for teachers and trainers were developed in consultation with sector professionals and experts to support and inspire your professional learning and career development. First introduced in 2014, they have since become widely used across the whole sector and have enabled teachers and trainers to deliver enhanced learning experiences and outcomes for students.

Learn more and view the 2022 Professional Standards in full

Professional Standards testimonial: Joyce Chen

Joyce Chen, Teacher Trainer, College of West Anglia

“I love that the updated Professional Standards are more holistic in developing teachers and trainers. Their language reflects the intention to help educators maintain and amplify their professionalism. Importantly, they emphasise the development of the learner as ‘a whole person’ and encourage staff to see themselves as part of a supportive professional community where they can share, question and self-improve.” 

Professional Standards testimonial: Helen Wood

Helen Wood, Head of Staff Professional Development, The Loddon School

“Having a defined set of Standards that underpin and enable excellence in any profession is critical. The ETF’s revised Professional Standards provide an essential toolkit for teachers in all settings, at all stages of their career and support truly effective, inspirational teaching and learning.” 

The Society for Education and Training (SET)

The Society for Education and Training (SET) is dedicated to improving the careers of our members and raising the standard and reputation of teaching and training in the Further Education and Training sector. SET is part of the ETF and is the only membership body dedicated to professionals within further education, vocational teaching and training.

Learn more about SET Membership

SET testimonial: Anita McGowan

Anita McGowan, Senior lecturer, University of Roehampton

“What I love about SET is the continuous developmental opportunities provided which are always relevant and specific to the FE sector. It is great to belong to such a community of like-minded teachers.”

SET testimonial: Dr Ysolina Delgado Arvela

Dr Ysolina Delgado Arvela, Learning Development and Delivery Coordinator, Leicestershire County Council Adult Learning Service

“The Society for Education and Training has opened doors to professional development and career enhancement opportunities for me. The work SET does to raise the profile of the Training and Skills sector in all its shapes and forms has been incredible over the years and I can proudly say I have greatly benefited from it.”


Hexagon icon cerianThis Department for Education-funded programme focuses on developing high quality mentoring training to support teachers from early careers onwards to develop and progress within the sector in order to improve the retention of new teachers entering the Further Education and Training sector.  The overall aims of this programme are to improve the quality of mentoring for practitioners in the Further Education and Training sector to increase the effectiveness of the support offered to mentees.

Learn more about mentoring at the ETF

Mentoring testimonial: Grant Lead

Grant Lead, General FE College

“We can see the positive impact that the mentoring training programme had on staff, and obviously if it’s had positive impact on staff and then teaching, it’s definitely had an impact on the learners that they’re teaching.”

Further Forces

Hexagon icon further forcesFurther Forces is an Education & Training Foundation programme supported by the Ministry of Defence, the Department of Education and the Gatsby Charitable Foundation. Its aim is to support anyone leaving the Military to bring their valuable experience, technical knowledge and skills into teaching in Further Education and Training. This programme is now closed.

Further Forces testimonial: Nick Harper

Nick Harper, Lecturer and Employer Engagement Consultant in Business & IT, Weymouth College

“The Further Forces Programme was beneficial to me. During the Initial Teacher Training programme, I developed the practical skills necessary to plan innovative and engaging active learning sessions, as well as learn about some of the finer details of how the Further Education sector works in collaboration with local businesses and makes a significant contribution to the country’s developing workforce. The programme also taught me about the importance of safeguarding in education as well as effective behaviour management strategies and reflective practices. I found that these skills have built upon and enhanced the expertise that I had already developed during my 27 years of service in the Navy.”

SET for Teaching Success

Hexagon icon set for teaching successThe SET for Teaching Success programme was set up to recruit, train and develop, mentor and support new teachers of Science, Engineering and Technology (SET), with a focus on technical education. This programme has now closed.

SET for Teaching Success testimonial: Adam Thompson

Adam Thompson, SET Participant, Vision West Nottinghamshire College

“The programme has inspired me to go as far as I can in education; it’s so diverse, there are so many opportunities available. I would like to be able to influence the curriculum and what is delivered within my organisation, so becoming the head of a department is on my list. After that? Principal – why not aim high?”