ian lomas speaks to members at agm

GMLPF AGM

GMLPF held its 14th Annual General Meeting last week at The Hallmark Hotel on Sefton Park, attended by 60 guests from regional learning providers, and featured three key speakers: Mike Firth (ESFA), Bev Barlow (Ofsted) and Julie Byrne (LCR Combined Authority)

Mike Firth ESFA

After a brief overview of the annual report for 2016/17 by CEO Ian Lomas and chair Debbie Tagoe, the morning’s programme commenced with an update from Mike Firth, Head of Intervention, ESFA. His presentation focussed on several key areas including an outline of changes within the ESFA, namely the new territorial teams who are responsible for overseeing the FE provider base from October 2018. They will be responsible for assessing risk, managing key budget performance and supporting vulnerable providers. Mike spoke about the internal and external factors that can impact on providers’ financial success or failure.

Mike’s presentation also featured an overview of T-levels and its positioning in relation to Apprenticeships and other post 16 choices, which produced lively discussions amongst members. In response to a request by Ian Lomas prior to the event, Mike dedicated the final part of his session to gaps in provision and market entry.

Download Mike’s slides

Bev Barlow Ofsted

Bev Barlow, Senior HMI, Ofsted, provided an update for members featuring a review of inspection outcomes for Liverpool City Region FE providers. Key issues identified through inspection for LCR providers include off the job training (Apprenticeships), development of new skills and knowledge (Apprenticeships), English and Maths (Study Programmes), levels of challenge (Study Programmes), work experience (Study Programmes) and progression and destinations (Study Programmes). Other issues are listed on Bev’s slides.

Bev also gave an update on the process for inspecting Apprenticeships and new providers, and overviews on future policy and the Education Inspection Framework 2019.

Download Bev’s slides

Julie Byrne LCR Combined Authority

Julie Byrne, the final speaker at the GMLPF AGM, gave guests a useful breakdown of the priorities laid out in the LCR Apprenticeship Growth Plan. Her presentation also provided Apprenticeship start statistics for the region, and considered the challenges facing employers and how the LCR Hub/Combined Authority are addressing these.

Download Julie’s slides

Results of ESFA Non-Levy Apprenticeships Procurement

Last week the ESFA notified applicants about the outcome of the recent procurement exercise for Apprenticeship training for non-levy paying employers. GMLPF is conducting a survey with its members to try to establish the impact of this procurement exercise.

At this early stage, we know the following

  • Nationally, it is clear that the ESFA has awarded learning providers a significantly reduced allocation, using a pro rate formula, than they originally asked for.
  • Regionally in the NW, it would appear that learning providers overall have been awarded funding that equates to approximately 61% and 54% of their 16-18 and 19+ bid values respectively. Some providers may have received more or less than this.
  • That in a number of case ESFA do not appear to have issued details of the scores which the applicant was awarded.
  • That mirroring the recent AEB procurement exercise, some providers have scored very highly and their tender passed the compliance checks and qualitative criteria yet, because their contract award resulted in a contract value of less than £200,000 for the Initial Contract Period , they have been unsuccessful.

Members have been sent a link to an online survey. Please complete the survey as this will provide GMLPF with a clear picture of the impact upon our members of the results that were published last week and assist us to more effectively represent you and lobby for change on your behalf. If you are a member and haven’t received a link please e-mail ian@gmlpf.net