tpm steps up to IiP Silver Status

tpm has stepped up another level on its programme of continuous improvement, with the achievement of Investors in People (IiP) 6th Generation Standard – Silver Status

Organisations that reach this challenging standard have to demonstrate they are exceeding the national average with their investment in colleagues. Moving from the standard accreditation, that we previously held, to the silver award is a huge accomplishment.

The award reflects the very high standards of people management and investment at tpm.  Our hard work and dedication has paid off, and the IiP assessor concluded all of our staff to be highly skilled and effective within their roles. And programme delivery, as well as learner and employer engagement skills, were found to be of the highest order.

Above The National Average

The report honed in on the values held by our staff and we soared above the national average measure for ‘adopting the values’. The three cornerstones the assessor was referring to are ‘opportunity’, ‘service’ and ‘excellence’.  The outcome of our assessment was clearly a resounding endorsement of everyone’s efforts.

A theme that came across strongly was the high level of trust within tpm.  It’s great to have an objective opinion on how well our strategy of encouraging staff to address problems and develop solutions is working.

Paula Hayes, Director at tpm says:

“Investing in our own staff on this level benefits everyone including the employers, apprentices and students that we work with. I’m already confident in our staff and this endorsement of our working practices and culture helps highlight the level of excellence we are striving for, and achieving.”

Underpinned With Integrity

The assessor picked up on the integrity of tpm’s staff and this is a theme that underpins the organisation. He concluded the style of leadership at all levels is one of openness and trust. Director Brian Quinn adds:

“Anybody who knows us will appreciate how we encourage and celebrate achievement; recognise and celebrate difference and seek to be supportive and respectful. Across staff and students we encourage responsibly and encourage improvement.  The IiP Silver Award shows this is working. I am so proud of the entire team.”

The assessment officer commented:

“I would like to thank everyone involved in the assessment for their hospitality, honesty, enthusiasm and integrity. I was made to feel very welcome and thoroughly enjoyed meeting everyone. In particular, the work of those acting to manage the assessment and the contributions and support of the senior management team ensured that the assessment was both well managed and well received by all concerned.”

tpm sign Time To Change pledge

GMLPF member tpm has formally signed up to Time To Change, the national campaign that tackles the stigma and discrimination around mental health.

For tpm, signing the pledge reiterates a lifetime philosophy for the Liverpool based Apprenticeships provider who are known across the region for helping young people overcome barriers to achieve personal and professional success.

tpm work with a network of supportive employers who recognise the complexities of mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety and their rising prevalence amongst young people.  Working closely with these companies who provide employment opportunities, tpm strives to provide their students with a seamless support process, enabling them to speak out and verbalise their mental health concerns in order to access help.

Director Brian Quinn signed the Time to Change pledge last month and says:

“For the longest time, tpm’s organisational philosophy has been founded on ending discrimination and facilitating equality. Our strategy has always been to encourage openness and honesty in staff and students, to create a safe environment where people feel comfortable to talk about any issues or problems they are facing. tpm’s culture mirrors the ethos of Time To Change in so many ways that it makes complete sense that we should formally support this worthwhile charity’s objectives.”


GMLPF is helping its members target young people on the Wirral this month in Good2Go magazine which is being distributed to pupils in schools. The publication offers advice on careers, exams and education, as well as information on Apprenticeships, Traineeships and other vocational learning.

11 Members Featured

Lots of our members and their students and even former students feature in the GMLPF sponsored pages. A total of 11 GMLPF members were featured across 6 pages.

Alt Valley Community Trust’s pioneering project to help young people to work in the NHS received a full page opposite a Mode success story that tells the story of Sarah Noonan’s journey to becoming a business owner. The spotlight was also on Shannon Sample who started out as a volunteer with disabled young people, progressed to an apprenticeship and was then named Outstanding Learner of The Year at the Progress to Excellence Training and Education Awards.

More Good News

St Helens Chamber have a spot to explain how they found 25 young people employment in a single week. And Michael John Academy share their good news about success rates among hairdressing and barbering students. Readers will also see a story about the GMLPF-funded #YOLO programme which teaches the art of wellbeing.

Further features cover the successes of Liam at Liverpool Chamber Training; Mark at Knowsley Community College; Hattie at Fit UK; Adam at Progress Sports and tpm hairdressing student Patrick Wilson. There might even be a #GMLPFhero among them!

Get Involved

We are always looking out for news stories from our members so please keep them coming. Editorial and social media support is just one of the benefits our members enjoy. Get in touch with your stories today by emailing our PR team [email protected] or membership enquiries can be sent to [email protected].

Former apprentice scoops prestigious international hair award

Patrick Wilson, successful principal stylist at Electric Hairdressing, who completed his Apprenticeship with GMLPF member tpm, recently scooped the ‘People’s Choice Award’ in the prestigious L’Oréal Colour Trophy, alongside colleague, David Halsall.

Patrick and David entered the L’Oréal Colour Trophy competition along with 1000 other entrants this year. The national competition is in its 60th year in 2015, making it the longest running live hairdressing competition in the world. The collaborators’ entry was shortlisted in the top ten from the North West region. From here their completed look was placed into the public vote and three were selected for the final, including theirs, a stunning entry thanks to David’s colourwork design and Patrick’s visionary cut and styling.

Talking to Helen Carroll, tpm’s hairdressing tutor and assessor, Patrick said
“I enter the colour trophy year on year; last year I reached the finals in the men’s cutting category so this year I decided to use a female model. Self-motivation inspires me most and wanting to succeed in the industry. Industry recognition is important to any successful stylist!”

Helen, who tutored Patrick on his Advanced Apprenticeship said, “I’m so proud to see one of tpm‘s former apprentices excelling in the industry!”

Phil Gallagher, art director and manager at Electric Liverpool said, “Electric Hairdressing heavily supports this event every year; it’s a huge team effort and it’s great to have a winner! It’s good PR and it puts Electric Liverpool out there!”

The Next Step

By joining GMLPF you will benefit from free publicity. We’re always on the look-out for interesting stories about learning and skills to include under the GMLPF banner in magazines, newspapers and on our website.

Knowsley Challenge

In August, we sponsored a double page spread in the Knowsley Challenge paper, entitled ‘The Next Step’, outlining options at 16. Case studies and news were included from a range of GMLPF members including tpm, Mode Training, Fit UK, Myerscough College, St Helens College and Progress Sports.

Educate magazine

The September edition of Educate magazine also saw us putting the spotlight on the activity of members through Mapped Out, and North Liverpool Community College had a dedicated news story about the success of a wellbeing programme ‘You Only Live Once’.

Having your stories in print not only gives you valuable media exposure but also gives your students and staff a boost. So once you’ve joined up make sure to get in touch with our PR team via [email protected]

young people demonstrating

Radicalisation Training in The Headlines

Once again in recent weeks radicalisation hits our headlines – this time with the NUS protesting loudly at the the Government’s stance on anti-radicalisation training for tutoring staff. Yusuf Hassan, the vice-president of student affairs for an umbrella group representing 130,000 Muslim students across the UK and Ireland was quoted in The Guardian as saying:

‘Terms such as radicalisation have not been defined or quantified. It is open to interpretation, leaving us in a difficult situation. It is not, nor should it be within the ability of a student or lecturer to report on extremism of people showing signs of it.’

It’s this kind of challenge that led to GMLPF running radicalisation workshops over the summer. The sessions were designed to help equip our providers and their tutors with the understanding to approach the radicalisation issue with balance and sensitivity.

Spectrum of New Challenges

Following an OFSTED report revealing that radicalisation was a key concern at some schools, the government introduced the ‘Prevent’ strategy and hailed it as as anti-radicalisation initiative. From July 1st the legislation placed an obligation on education and training institutions to extend the safeguarding of students in their care to include anti-radicalisation.

GMLPF’s members are aware that extreme groups often focus their efforts on recruiting the younger generation. But whilst the legal obligation presents new challenges, it doesn’t necessarily change the existing beliefs or attitudes of our members which fundamentally embrace and encourage social diversity.

What Our Members are Doing

Debbie Tagoe, GMLPF Chair and a Director at Mode Training sums up: ‘Of course training providers need to be on the look out for for potentially vulnerable individuals just as much as anybody pushing any kind of propaganda. But the challenge is to develop an approach and ethos which both promotes British values as stipulated by the government, and equally embraces diversity.’

Brian Quinn, operations director at tpm on Merseyside explains: ‘We recognise that early intervention and prevention rather than cure is the best – or perhaps the only – approach. We have always believed that a proactive approach, closely managing situations to ensure a positive outcome, reflects our sense of public duty. To this aim we joined forces with fellow training provider Mode to tackle the challenge of ‘Prevent’ head on through a series of workshops’.

Integrating ‘Prevent’

Moving forward tpm and Mode have action plans which include:

  • Focusing on critical thinking in pupils
  • Ensuring pupils are aware of bias and propaganda, especially online
  • Rewriting of policies and ensuring curriculum plans reflect the appropriate requirements
  • Look for practical ways to embrace diversity
  • Equipping staff with clear steps to take if they encounter a student at risk
  • Encourage a healthy approach to online citizenship and get students to take responsibility for the choices they make

James Glendenning, chief executive of GMLPF adds: ‘The implementation of the ‘Prevent’ strategy needs careful consideration so that acceptance of different faiths and beliefs is not compromised. We always recommend our members promote democracy, anti-extremism, individual liberty and mutual respect.’

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Dyslexia Foundation chair appointment for tpm director

Brian Quinn, director of GMLPF member, tpm has been appointed chair of the Dyslexia Foundation.

tpm and the Dyslexia Foundation have been collaborating and sharing best practice for over a decade. The Foundation is a leading authority on dyslexia and inclusion, and an invaluable resource for tpm whose priority is to support young people into employment through programmes like Apprenticeships.

Success rates

Currently, almost 90% of tpm students with dyslexia and other learning differences achieve their qualifications. This figure exceeds the success rates for tpm students without learning differences which reflects the organisational emphasis on supporting these young people.

Brian explains the significance of tpm’s collaboration with The Dyslexia Foundation:

Organisational culture

“Up to 25% of the young people recruited onto our training programmes are dyslexic. Our organisational culture is such that we insist on providing them, like all our students, with everything they need to fully develop their skills and potential. But we can’t do this on our own. The relationship we enjoy with the Dyslexia Foundation provides us with the insight, best practice and knowledge to enable us to meet our students’ needs as effectively as possible.

“Working with agencies like Dyslexia Foundation is an approach tpm embraces, particularly in areas as important as supporting students with learning difference. It gives us access to expertise which consistently raises the bar of best practice within tpm, and in turn nurtures inclusiveness which benefits our students.”

Transition into employment

tpm works with the Dylexia Foundation to support young people with dyslexia as they transition into employment through apprenticeships. This collaboration has been highlighted by the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) in a video case study, and recently cited in The International Dyslexia Association publication, Perspectives on Language and Literacy, Fall Edition.

GMLPF Challenge Fund

Brian takes up the position of chair at the Foundation after a year serving as a trustee on the Board. The announcement of his appointment coincides with the success of tpm’s bid for funding from the GMLPF Challenge Fund to run a project which will enable more learning providers to identify and support students with dyslexia.

GMLPF Apprenticeship Reform Planning Implementation Group 11/7/14

The first meeting of the GMLPF Apprenticeships Reform Implementation Planning Group took place last week.

Brian Quinn (tpm) and GMLPF Chair Debbie Tagoe (Mode Training) provided an overview of the Reforms to date, and GMLPF activity over the past months including:

  • Coordination with NWPN of regional employer responses to Government consultation
  • Lobbying: meetings with MPs and Councillors

The group discussed terms of reference and objectives which will be formalised and shared on the GMLPF website. Broadly, the group will be pushing for the detail of the landscape under the new reforms to enable members to prepare effectively. They will identify the key critical points which will impact on delivery and feed these through to members, local authorities and other local and regional groups/meetings with partners and MPs.

Discussion points

The following points were made/discussed:

  • Members of the group are representing the sector as a whole, not their respective organisations
  • Apprentices and employers to be invited onto the group to ensure their voices are represented
  • Importance of having a representative from a trailblazer on the group
  • Dedicated blog section on GMLPF site to post updates on activities/actions of the group
  • Group to take responsibility of keeping local employers informed via GMLPF blog about the development of reforms and their impact
  • Potential areas of focus in coming months: group agreed on some examples of specific areas of focus: quality, NEET, LLDD, Ofsted
  • Development of case studies to illustrate success that is at threat under new reforms
  • Communications responsibilities of the group to include: keeping members informed of progress keeping employers informed, and raising awareness of the issues/impact of reform

Members of the group are: James Glendenning (GMLPF) Brian Quinn (tpm), Debbie Tagoe (Mode), Pavlina Kiakides (GMLPF), Doreen Hesketh (Winning Pitch), Angela Owens (Hugh Baird), Paul Sheron (NWCS), Bev Doughty (Southport College), Martin Knight (ESG Group), Hilary Comaish (The Training Station) ,Adam Gilbert (Asset Training), Paul Feaver (Riverside LEC), Joan Furnival (NWCS) and Alison Gibson (Michael John Academy).

The group will meet each month.

GMLPF & partners meet Matthew Hancock MP to discuss reforms

Last week, we were grateful to have the opportunity to raise our reform concerns with Minister for Skills, Matthew Hancock. James Glendenning, CEO at GMLPF, Brian Quinn of tpm, Andrew and Sarah Collinge, and Herbert Howe of Herbert of Liverpool met with the minister and Esther McVey MP on 3rd July.

During our session, the Minister listened to our outlines of:

  • the detrimental impact the reforms could have on employers and training providers
  • employers’ lack of understanding of reforms and their implications
  • activity undertaken by the North West Provider Network, including the facilitation of approximately 500 employer responses to the technical consultation, the vast majority of which express severe concerns and intentions to disengage with apprenticeships

Along with our partners at the meeting, GMLPF stressed the risk of proceeding without taking employer views into account, specifically requesting that the minister provide employers with choice.

In addition, we:

  • Suggested that a reliance on mandatory contributions is risky, given the history regarding contributions. The minister’s view was that SMEs recruiting 16-18 year olds would recoup the majority of the contribution via government payments
  • Pressed for more detail so learning providers can prepare effectively for transition and implementation. We highlighted that so far there has been little opportunity for them, as the “sales and delivery force” of Apprenticeships, to engage in dialogue with Government. We asked for providers to be involved in any further developments
  • Requested clarification on the expected roles of employers and training providers under new arrangements. We stressed that the lack of available detail around this adds to anxiety about the reforms

The minister acknowledged our concerns whilst reiterating that the reforms are necessary. He accepted that a fuller explanation of how and when payments would be triggered was essential, and that this would address concerns as to how employers and training providers could prepare themselves for navigating the system appropriately.

The minister recognised the large response to the technical consultation and confirmed his department were working through responses – noting that he would address concerns raised as “he genuinely wants the system to be as simple as possible and easy to access”. He finished by confirming that a Government announcement would be made soon, explaining how the programme will operate in practice. We look forward to hearing this announcement which hopefully will clarify many issues that remain nebulous.

Coming up next in GMLPF’s Apprenticeships Reform schedule:
  • First meeting of GMLPF’s Apprenticeships Reform Implementation Planning Group on 11th July
  • GMLPF and partners to meet with Liam Byrne MP in early September
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tpm featured in national toolkit for recruiting apprentices with disabilities

tpm has been featured as an example of best practice in a toolkit that encourages businesses to hire apprentices with disabilities or specific learning differences and difficulties.

Developed by NIACE, the toolkit is being widely promoted and provides practical information, sources of support and case studies of employers whose organisations have benefited from hiring disabled apprentices.

tpm were included in the toolkit because of their strategic and organisational work in this area which has resulted in consistently high rates of achievement by their apprentices with disabilities. Over the last decade, tpm and the Dyslexia Foundation have worked together to develop a comprehensive package of support to learners with learning difference and/or disabilities.

tpm have a solid culture of supporting and enabling staff and apprentices to reach their potential. The identification, diagnosis and support of disability and learning needs are central to their ethos and provision. tpm can demonstrate that their apprentices with dyslexia and other Specific Learning Difficulties achieve to the same level as apprentices who are not disabled.

Director of Operations, Brian Quinn comments

“This is a proud achievement for tpm. It represents the culmination of a passion for equality and diversity and for the best possible outcomes for staff and students alike.”

The toolkit was developed by The National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE), funded by the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) and is supported by the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS).

View tpm in NIACE’s employer toolkit

For further information on learner-support, learning difference and inclusive practice contact Brian Quinn.