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ESFA Update: 18 November 2020

Latest information and actions from the Education and Skills Funding Agency for academies, schools, colleges, local authorities and further education providers.

Documents

ESFA Update further education: 18 November 2020

ESFA Update academies: 18 November 2020

ESFA Update local authorities: 18 November 2020

Details
Items for further education
ArticleTitle
InformationTraineeships Framework for Delivery 2020 to 2021 – information for employers and education providers
Information16 to 19 funding regulations update for coronavirus (COVID-19) and impact on planned hours for 2020 to 2021
Informationqualification achievement rates (QARs) and achievement volumes
InformationNational Apprenticeship Awards 2020
InformationFind Apprenticeship Training redesign
Informationcampaign to recruit next Further Education Commissioner – deadline this Friday
Items for academies
Informationupdated 2020 to 2021 dedicated schools grant allocations
Information16 to 19 funding regulations update for coronavirus (COVID-19) and impact on planned hours for 2020 to 2021
Information‘Something’s Not Right’ campaign
Items for local authorities
Informationupdated 2020 to 2021 dedicated schools grant allocations
Information16 to 19 funding regulations update for coronavirus (COVID-19) and impact on planned hours for 2020 to 2021
Information‘Something’s Not Right’ campaign

Published 18 November 2020

CEC Still to Persuade Majority of Schools to Engage with FE and HE

The following article by Bill Camden was published in FEWEEK

Less than half of the schools in the government’s multi-million pound network of careers hubs have met a target for providing “encounters with further and higher education”.

A report published today by the Careers and Enterprise Company (CEC) shows that while more schools are meeting the eight Gatsby benchmarks for good careers guidance, progress towards full compliance remains slow.


“Encounters with further and higher education” is the seventh benchmark and sets a target for every pupil by the age of 16 to have had a “meaningful encounter with providers of the full range of learning opportunities, including sixth forms, colleges, universities and apprenticeship providers”, which should include the “opportunity to meet both staff and pupils”.

But today’s CEC data shows that just 47 per cent of the more than 2,000 schools in the quango’s careers hubs fully achieved the target by March 2020.

The figure was even lower when the CEC looked at achievements in its whole network of 4,000 schools and colleges – where 26 per cent met the target by the same period. For those schools not in the CEC’s network, 13 per cent met the target.

The findings chime with concerns from the education select committee about non-compliance with the Baker Clause – a law introduced in January 2018 that stipulates schools must ensure a range of FE providers have access to pupils from year 8 to year 13 to provide information on technical education and apprenticeships.

The committee questioned Ofsted chief inspector Amanda Spielman on this issue during a hearing this week. Spielman said inspectors have found examples of non-compliance in schools and pledged to give careers guidance the “attention it deserves” when inspections restart.

Asked why they thought schools were struggling to provide encounters with FE providers for pupils, a CEC spokesperson said: “There has been sustained improvement in the number of young people having encounters with further and higher education. This improvement represents a threefold increase over two years.

“These are rigorous and demanding standards for schools and colleges. In order to achieve the criteria, they must achieve a range of measures such as meeting a full range of FE and HE providers and information about a broad range of apprenticeships.”

Today’s CEC report shows that overall national performance towards all eight of the Gatsby benchmarks has doubled since 2016/17 – schools and colleges have moved from achieving 1.87 of them on average to 3.75 as of March 2020.

Progress is higher when looking only at schools and colleges in career hubs – they are achieving 4.8 of the target on average.

The other benchmarks that appear to be proving most difficult to meet include “a stable careers programme” and “addressing the needs of each student”.

The CEC has come under fire in recent years from high-profile people in the sector like education select committee chair Robert Halfon, who has accused the quango of making little progress in improving careers education in England despite receiving millions from the public purse.

The first 20 careers hubs, for example, launched in 2018 and were backed with £5 million, covering 710 schools and colleges. A further 19 opened or expanded in 2019 and were given with £2.5 million as the programme scaled up to cover 1,300 schools and colleges.

An additional 882 schools and colleges joined the programme in September 2020 backed with an extra £2 million.

Figures obtained by FE Week’s sister title Schools Week last year revealed that the CEC itself had received lmost £100 million since launching in 2014 to boost provision.

Careers hubs comprise colleges working with local schools and universities, training providers, employers and career professionals to pool their expertise on improving careers education in their area.

They include a “hub lead” who works with school and college leaders to provide “strategic support” on their careers plan and access to business networks, as well their delivery against the Gatsby benchmarks.

The hubs also have “careers leaders”, who offer face-to-face careers training to schools and colleges.

A CEC spokesperson said: “The evidence shows performance on this measure is significantly better in CEC’s Careers Hubs and network, proving that targeted investment has accelerated progress.”

ESFA Update: 11 November 2020

Latest information and actions from the Education and Skills Funding Agency for academies, schools, colleges, local authorities and further education providers.

Documents

ESFA Update further education: 11 November 2020

ESFA Update academies: 11 November 2020

ESFA Update local authorities: 11 November 2020

Details
Items for further education
ActionTitle
InformationExam Support Service – functional skills qualifications (FSQs) apprenticeships
Informationcall for evidence on post-16 level 2 and below study launched Tuesday 10 November
Informationmonitoring post-16 funding
Informationguidance for the delivery and application of industry placements – Capacity and Delivery Fund (CDF) from the 2021 to 2022 academic year
Informationthe beta version of the cross year indicative payments reports has launched
Informationthe National Careers Service Virtual Jobs Fair returns 13 to 20 November
Informationcampaign to recruit next Further Education Commissioner – deadline for applications 20 November

Items for academies

ActionTitle
Informationland and building collection tool update
Informationacademies accounts return online form now live
Informationearly career framework reforms
InformationSchools and Academies Show 17 to 20 November
Informationmonitoring post-16 funding
Informationguidance for the delivery and application of industry placements – Capacity and Delivery Fund (CDF) from the 2021 to 2022 academic year
InformationTeachers’ Pension Scheme Pension Board – vacancy for a member representative

Items for local authorities

ActionTitle
Informationmonitoring post-16 funding
Informationguidance for the delivery and application of industry placements – Capacity and Delivery Fund (CDF) from the 2021 to 2022 academic year
Informationthe beta version of the cross year indicative payments reports has launched

Published 11 November 2020

Have Your Say on Post-16 Level 2 and Below Study
November 12, 2020
0

Views sought on how to boost study at level 2 and below so more students progress into jobs or further study.

Published 10 November 2020From: Department for Education

A call for evidence seeking views on how to ensure post-16 qualifications at level 2 and below – excluding GCSEs – can support more people to progress into further study or employment, has been launched (10 November) by Apprenticeships and Skills Minister Gillian Keegan.

Access the Online Survey Here

Qualifications at level 2 (GCSE equivalent) and below can be the springboard that supports large numbers of young people and adults to access higher levels of study, unlock employment opportunities, re-engage in education and secure English, maths and digital skills.

However, new analysis published by the Department for Education has revealed that 60% of 16 year olds who study a classroom based level 2 course do not move on to study at level 3 (A Level or T Level equivalent) the following year. It also highlights that 37% of students who leave education with a level 2 qualification find it harder to get a job, compared to 14% of students who leave with a level 3 qualification.

Making sure everyone can access high quality qualifications that give them the skills they need to secure a good job and that provide employers with the skilled workforce they and the economy need to build back better from coronavirus, is a priority for the government. The call for evidence builds on the action already underway to overhaul the post-16 landscape so all students, no matter where they live and whatever qualification they choose, they know it will set them on the path to success.

Gillian Keegan, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister said:

We are overhauling the post-16 system to make sure it delivers for everyone. We are already taking action to make sure qualifications at level 3 are fit for purpose, but for too long courses at level 2 and below have been overlooked and undervalued – we want to fix that.

We want all students to be confident that whatever option they choose it will be high quality, valued by employers and will lead to an apprenticeship, further study or a great job. I encourage everyone from students to employers of all sizes to share their views so we can transform further education in this country.

In October the government set out detailed measures aimed at making sure that whatever course a student takes at level 3 and below they can be confident it will be fit for purpose and lead to good outcomes. This includes removing funding from qualifications that overlap with T Levels and A levels, and only funding qualifications that are high quality and lead to good outcomes for students.

Work is already underway to overhaul technical and vocational education in this country, including the roll out of new T Levels, working with employers to create more high quality apprenticeship opportunities, establishing a system of higher technical education and a network of Institutes of Technology, backed by up to £290 million.

The government will shortly publish its ambitious FE White Paper which will set out plans to build on and strengthen the excellent work that is already happening across the country to unlock potential and level up skills and boosts opportunities for more people.

Jobcentre Guidance on New National Covid Restrictions
November 11, 2020
0

DWP PRESS RELEASE 9 November 2020: On 31 October 2020, the Prime Minister announced that the Government will be introducing new national COVID-19 measures in England to protect the NHS and save lives.

This means from 5 November 2020 until 2 December 2020 in England, the following updated jobcentre guidance will apply to customers, and will ensure essential support is provided whilst keeping colleagues and customers safe.

  • Jobcentres will remain open, as they have throughout this pandemic, to provide essential services and support to those whom we cannot help in any other way.
  • We will ensure that this support continues to be delivered in line with the latest government and PHE guidance – such as maintaining social distancing and rigorous cleaning regimes – keeping our colleagues and customers safe.
  • Customers will continue to be supported by Work Coaches online and over the phone, with jobcentres remaining open to help those who need extra support and are unable to interact with us on the phone or digitally.
  • Our Work Coaches will continue to deliver employment support programmes such as Kickstart and JETS, by phone or through online channels.
  • Face-to-face assessments for disability benefits remain suspended.
  • If you think you might be entitled to a health and disability benefit, you should contact us as soon as possible to make a claim in the usual way.
  • For existing customers, payments will continue as normal. Anyone who has a change in their needs should contact us immediately so we can ensure they are receiving the correct level of support.

On 3 November 2020, we also confirmed that the suspension of the Minimum Income Floor – for self-employed customers claiming Universal Credit in England, Scotland, and Wales – has been extended to the end of April 2021. This means that self-employed customers on Universal Credit will receive a payment that reflects their earnings at this difficult time.

For Scotland:

On 2 November, the Scottish Government introduced a new five level tiered system. The following will therefore apply to jobcentres and customers in Scotland:

Levels 0, 1 and 2 guidance:

  • Customers will continue to be supported by Work Coaches online and over the phone, with jobcentres remaining open to help those who need extra support and are unable to interact with us on the phone or digitally.
  • All jobcentres to remain open – maintaining social distancing and regular desk and communal space cleaning in line with current Covid-19 guidance.
  • If you think you might be entitled to a health and disability benefit you should contact us as soon as possible to make a claim in the usual way.
  • For existing customers, payments will continue as normal. Anyone who has a change in their needs should contact us immediately so we can ensure they are receiving the correct level of support.

Levels 3 and 4:

  • For these levels, the jobcentre guidance in place for the new national restrictions in England until 2 December 2020 (above) will apply.

For Wales:

The Welsh Government introduced the two week ‘firebreak’ restrictions in Wales on 26 October 2020 that will last until 9 November 2020. The jobcentre guidance in place for the new national restrictions in England until 2 December 2020 (above) will apply during this period.

After 9 November 2020, the Welsh Government announced an easing of restrictions. From then, the following will apply to jobcentres and customers in Wales:

  • All jobcentres to remain open – maintaining social distancing and regular desk and communal space cleaning in line with current Covid-19 guidance.
  • Customers will continue to be supported by Work Coaches online and over the phone, with jobcentres remaining open to help those who need extra support and are unable to interact with us on the phone or digitally.

For Northern Ireland:

Please contact the Department for Communities for more information on measures introduced in Northern Ireland – 028 9082 9000.

A DWP spokesperson said:

Jobcentres have remained open throughout this pandemic to provide vital support and essential services to those whom we cannot help remotely.

These new measures will ensure that we can continue this support while keeping our colleagues and customers safe, following the latest Government and PHE guidance.”

Regulator’s New “5-Minute Guides” for Charity Trustees

The Charity Commission has launched a new set of simple, easy to understand guides to help trustees.

The Charity Commission, the charity regulator for England and Wales, has launched a new set of simple, easy to understand guides, designed to help trustees run their charities in line with the law.

The new guides cover five key aspects of charity management – a ‘core syllabus’ covering the basics that the regulator expects all trustees to be aware of.

They explain the basics of:

This ‘gateway’ level guidance will make it easier and quicker for all trustees to check what is expected and to find more detailed information if needed, which is all the more important as charities respond to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Commission’s research and testing with trustees have helped shape their design and content.

The publications come as part of the Commission’s programme, outlined in its 2020/21 Business Plan, to deliver updated core guidance and an improved website, so that it is easier for trustees, who are overwhelmingly unpaid volunteers, to access the information they need. This is in line with the Commission’s strategic priority of ensuring trustees have the tools and understanding they need to succeed, and helping them maximise the difference they make.

The new tools have been launched to coincide with Trustees’ Week, the annual celebration of charity trustees and the contribution they make to society.

ESFA Update: 4 November 2020

Latest information and actions from the Education and Skills Funding Agency for academies, schools, colleges, local authorities and further education providers.

Documents

ESFA Update further education: 4 November 2020

ESFA Update academies: 4 November 2020

ESFA Update local authorities: 4 November 2020

Details

Items for further education

Informationthe apprenticeship technical funding guide has been updated
Information16 to 19 tuition fund
Informationcampaign to recruit next Further Education Commissioner now live

Items for academies

InformationAcademy trust virtual finance director’s networking event
InformationView my financial insights webinars
Informationautomating your academies accounts return
Information16 to 19 tuition fund

Items for local authorities

Informationthe apprenticeship technical funding guide has been updated
Information16 to 19 tuition fund

Published 4 November 2020

DWP: Tier 3 FSF DPS 2 Questionnaire
November 3, 2020
0

The DWP Employment Category Supplier Survey and Market Engagement for Tier 3 FSF DPS 2 Questionnaire is now live.

The survey covers;

  • Section A – 2020 DWP Employment Category Supplier Survey
  • Section B – CAEHRS – Feedback on the recent competition
  • Section C – Market Engagement: Tier 3 and Flexible Support Fund DPS 2

The survey will take no longer than 30 minutes to complete and will remain open until 20 November 2020. Use the following link to access the questionnaire. https://getinvolved.dwp.gov.uk/03-finance/a2e26fde/

ERSA: Meet the Primes of CAEHRS
November 2, 2020
0

Through the work of ERSA, organisations have the opportunity to hear on YouTube from the following organisations who have been awarded a successful place on the DWP’s new Commercial Agreement for Employment and Health Related Services, the CAEHRS Framework.

The following ERSA members have been grouped in the order they presented. 

Group 1 

Jobs 22
Palladium International
Pinnacle Housing (PORTRUS)
Seetec Pluss
Serco Group

Watch this group again here

Group 2

Capita Group
Fedcap Employment
G4S Regional Management (UK&I)
Ingeus UK
Shaw Trust

Watch this group again here

Group 3

Adecco Working Ventures
Business 2 Business
The Growth Company
Twin Training International
WISE Ability

Group 4

Watch this group again here

Standguide
The Salvation Army Trustees
Cumbria Chamber of Commerce
Go Train
Sodexo

Watch this group again here

The full list of CAEHRS Framework organisations is here.

Check ERSA’s opportunities hub for details of open opportunities. 

*SAVE THE DATE(S)
The following meeting dates and agendas are being shared directly with ERSA members this week and following these meetings we’ll be inviting applications for chairs/vice chairs for all. Get in touch if you are interested in one of these opportunities via events@ersa.org.uk (ERSA members only)

Wales                               
3 November, 2 – 3.30pm

Central England             
4 November, 10 – 11.30am

Scotland                  
5 November, 10am – 12pm  (extended meeting for Employment Support Scotland)     

North East                       
6 November 10 – 11.30am

In Conversation with the DWP
6 November, 3 – 5pm

ERSA members will be joined by representatives from the DWP; 

  • Mark Leigh, Deputy Director, Head of Employment Services Category, Department for Work and Pensions, Commercial Directorate, Finance Group
  • Karina Stibbards, Deputy Director, Labour Market Strategy, Labour Market, Families and Disadvantage Directorate, Policy Group;
  • Nick Butler, Employment Account Director, Department for Work and Pensions, Finance Group, Contract Management and Partner Delivery Directorate.

ERSA members can submit questions in advance of the session via membership@ersa.org.uk.

North West                     
9 November 10-11.30am

Southern                         
10 November 10 – 11.30am

London & Home Counties
12 November, 10.30am – 12pm

*With regret, these meetings are limited to ERSA members only

ERSA membership might be more accessible than you think
Membership is per organisation, with unlimited staff access to services and events, rates start from £300 for the next 12 months. Information on joining the voice of employment support can be found at https://ersa.org.uk/membership/registerIn case you missed it

Prior Notice of DWP Tier 3 and Flexible Support Fund Dynamic Purchasing System 2 (FSF DPS 2) – Market Engagement Activity

Meet the Primes of CAEHRS 

DWP’s new framework for employment and health related services announced

Analysis: The impact of Universal Credit in Wales
October 29, 2020
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Analysis: The impact of Universal Credit in Wales by Policy in Practice

Just before the onset of COVID-19, Policy in Practice completed a major study of the impact of Universal Credit in Wales. Early in 2019, we were commissioned by the Welsh Government to look at how Universal Credit had affected the Welsh Council Tax Reduction Scheme. The Welsh Government also wanted to know if the introduction of Universal Credit had led to any changes in the level of rent and council tax arrears. 

Groundbreaking study

This study broke new ground for Policy in Practice: 

We made extensive use of administrative data from all 22 Welsh local authorities, tracking the benefit journeys of claimants in four waves over a period of 12 months, and matching with data on rent arrears and council tax arrears. It was the first time we have used data from so many authorities and housing associations in one national project. The matching and analysis were complex and very challenging, but well worth the effort.·       

We also ran two large-scale surveys to get a better understanding of the personal experiences of Universal Credit that are not evident from administrative data. We invited people to take part in the survey in several ways, one of which was via a link in our award-winning Benefit and Budgeting Calculator. Nearly 500 actual and potential benefit claimants completed the claimant survey, and nearly 500 stakeholders such as social and private landlords, local authority officials and third sector organisations completed the stakeholder survey.
Five findings from the 18 month data-led investigation into Universal Credit in Wales

There is a wealth of information in the two reports published by the Welsh Government, an interim report published in January 2020 and the final report published in July 2020. The key findings are:
1.     A generous Council Tax Reduction (CTR) Scheme pays off
2.     Universal Credit has resulted in some council tax and rent arrears
3.     Awareness of CTR, and take-up, are still too low
4.     The impact of Universal Credit on CTR can be mitigated by changes to the scheme
5.     More help should be given to those claiming Universal Credit
Further analysis commissioned to understand the impact of COVID-19

This research was carried out before the COVID-19 pandemic and so does not take account of the increase in Universal Credit claims that have resulted. We are delighted that the Welsh Government has now asked us to analyse the impact of the pandemic on CTR caseloads. We will look at the economic impact, demographic changes, and likely impact on future CTR caseloads and council tax collection rates.

Find out more

Pooling administrative data can help other areas plan for and track recovery from COVID-19. Policy in Practice has secured funding to help with this. Find out more here or contact us to discuss.·       

Published in January 2020, the interim report focuses on the impact of Universal Credit on the Council Tax Reduction Scheme (CTRS) and possible amendments to the scheme. Download the interim report

Published in July 2020, the final report looks at the impact of Universal Credit on the Council Tax Reduction Scheme, council tax reduction awards, council tax arrears and rent arrears. It also considers the experience of Universal Credit claimants and stakeholders. Download the final report
Join our next webinars
How to find the right debt solution for everyone on Wed 11 November. Register

2020: Policy review of the year, and a forward look to 2021 on Wed 9 December. Register

Our webinars are free and start at 10.30 for 1 hour 15 mins. If you can’t make the date please register anyway to automatically receive the slides and recording. Contact hello@policyinpractice.co.uk.