Getting ready for T Levels

7 Oct 2019 11:05 AM

It’s an exciting, yet challenging time in education as we approach the launch of T Levels in September 2020 to the first wave of providers.

T Levels signify a big change in technical education as they will become one of the main choices for students post-16, alongside A levels and apprenticeships. They will offer learners a mixture of classroom learning and industry placement with the first 3 routes being delivered from September 2020.

Although there is a phased approach to the launch of these exciting new qualifications, there’s lots that centres can, and should, be doing to get themselves ready for launch, to ensure it’s a smooth process and that learners, and parents, feel supported with the transition.

Firstly, it’s important both staff and students are aware of what T Levels are and what they mean. The government website provides a great overview, including what subjects will be offered, how the qualifications are structured, timelines, and how it will work for post-16 choices for learners.

Familiarise yourself with the government’s T Level action plan, which focuses on providing effective preparation for students to complete a T Level. It’s likely to be a confusing time for students and parents, as they get their head around the new courses.

It’s also a challenging time for providers, as the introduction of T Levels will require additional costs for things like new equipment, additional teaching hours, teacher training, and organising industry placements. However, the government has announced additional funding of £500m a year once T Levels are fully rolled out, so centres will receive support.

And of course, it’s important to keep up to date with which awarding organisations are delivering T Levels and in which subjects. At NCFE, we were delighted to make the very recent announcement that we have been awarded delivery partner contracts for 5 new T Levels in Digital Business Services, Digital Support Services, Health, Healthcare Science, and Science, from September 2021. This is in additional to our announcement earlier this year that we were awarded the contract to develop the technical qualification for the Education and Childcare T Level which is being rolled out from September 2020. NCFE will now be delivering qualifications across three of the four new technical education routes announced so far, in Childcare and Education, Health and Science, and Digital.

Those of you approved to deliver the first phase of T Levels from September 2020 will now be taking part in the first round of the phased implementation, with the support of the Association of Colleges and their partner, The Challenge Network. For those centres taking part, we wish you lots of luck. We look forward to working with many of you in the near future to bring these exciting T Levels to learners across the country!