DfE consultation on level 2 and 3 qualifications

22 January 2021

LAST CHANCE - they may lose funding and regulation!

The Department for Education has a consultation on the future of level 2 and 3 qualifications in the UK.  Most of our technical qualifications are low volume – especially in arb and forestry but also in horticulture and some of them are already losing funding.  We would very strongly recommend that members respond if we want our college based qualifications to be funded going forwards.  

Level 3 consultation (deadline 31st Jan): https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/review-of-post-16-qualifications-at-level-3-second-stage 

Level 2 consultation (deadline 14 Feb): https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/post-16-study-at-level-2-and-below-call-for-evidence 

Some points that Confor will be making are: 

  • It is important for us to retain recognised industry qualifications.
  • Apprenticeships and T’Levels are big, long programmes, and positive, broad introductions to the industry.  Forestry requires a wide range of different technical skills which may not always be covered by the Apprenticeships or T’Levels. It is important for the industry that we retain these specialist, but vital skills. ‘One size fits all’ doesn’t always work for the land-based sector. 
  • Many entrants to the industry are adult learners and career changers who need to be able to study flexibly and may not be able to commit to full time courses like Apprenticeships and T’Levels.
  • Some of our college based qualifications do ‘overlap’ but suit different parts of the sector because of emphasis and specialisms.  Further information is needed on the new criteria for eligible quals and terms such as ‘overlap’.
  • There may be access issues for longer term programmes like Apprenticeships or T’Levels which will exclude some candidates e.g. employers struggling to support apprenticeships due to industry business, employers not able to support work placements, problems with providers offering long programmes of learning.