Conference Focus On Transforming Skills Delivery In Wales

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Transforming skills delivery in Wales will top the agenda when work based learning providers converge on The Vale Resort at Hensol, near Cardiff for a major conference on November 11.

This year’s annual conference organised by the National Training Federation Wales (NTfW) is held against a backdrop of the Welsh Assembly Government’s (WAG’s) ambition to transform education and training provision in Wales in collaboration with all stakeholders.

NTfW has secured funding from WAG under the transformation budget to encourage collaborative initiatives that enhance choices for all learners in the most appropriate, effective and cost-efficient manner.

WAG is looking for schools, colleges, universities and work based learning providers to work together in collaborative and creative ways to achieve improvements in the range and scope of delivery that learners require.

Wales’ Minister for children, education and lifelong learning Leighton Andrews is one of the keynote speakers at the conference. He will be joined by NTfW president Lord Ted Rowlands, Philip Lay, retail director of S. A. Brain and Co Ltd, Janet Jones, chair of the Federation of Small Businesses Wales and Dr Geoff Hayward, director of research, associate director of SKOPE and reader in education at Oxford University Department of Education.

Dr Hayward will explore the question “What is vocational education and training for?” while Mrs Jones will give a small business perspective of skills for success.

The conference will also include eight workshops that will cover themes key to the future direction of work based learning in Wales. Bethan Webb, the Welsh Assembly Government’s head of funding policy, will discuss funding after August 2011 while NTfW project leader Brian Dunlop and his team of transformation officers will focus on becoming champions of vocational pathways.

The Credit and Qualifications Framework for Wales (CQFW) will be the subject for the NTfW’s Jeff Protheroe, Trevor Clark, head of the CQFW and Mandy James, national training manager for City & Guilds.

Bernard O’Reilly, Estyn’s lead inspector for work based learning and the Department of Work and Pensions, will give an update on his work, Nick Lee, WAG’s head of Skill Build development, will lead a workshop on employability programmes for the future and a new approach to apprenticeship delivery will be the subject for John Dick, national sales manager for Pearson Work Based Learning.

Skills for the future in work based learning will be explored by Michelle Creed and Mark Isherwood, LLUK’s Wales director and sector manager respectively, while Russell Symmons and Alyson Dacey, e-learning advisers for RSC Wales, will demonstrate how technology can support partnership working at local, regional and nation levels.

NTfW general manager Alun Davies said the conference is a must for any learning provider that has an interest in transforming skills delivery in Wales.

“This year’s conference will focus on employability and the employer’s view of the transformation agenda, with contributions from Philip Lay, Janet Jones and Dr Geoff Hayward,” he added.

“Employers are seeing the benefits of work based learning, saying what they want in the future and are keen to hear how we can meet that transformation.”

To book a place at the conference contact or Tel: 0844 736 2651.

The NTfW is a network of 97 quality assured training providers across Wales who are contracted by WAG to deliver £121 million of work based learning programmes from a total allocation of £127 million.

The network, which has links to 35,000 employers across Wales, comprises independent sector training providers, local authorities, further education institutions, charities and the voluntary sector.

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