Recent news indicates that Functional skills qualifications are set to be reformed, in the subjects of English and Maths. This was brought to national attention by the Nick Boles, the Skills Minister for the UK, who announced the changes. How2Become, ever focused on the changing spectrum of education, decide to investigate.
What are the Functional Skills Qualifications?
The new reforms will be introduced under the Education and Training Foundation (ETF), which is designed to ensure that Functional Skills play an integral role in young people’s education. The reforms will not only be aimed at helping young people, but adults who are returning to education. This will ensure that candidates are developing rigorous and well taught skills, which have real credibility with today’s employers.
Why are the reforms being introduced?
The changes that are being made to the Maths and English functional skills qualifications programme are a result of an investigation by the ETF, which found that although the current programmes were ‘passable’, there was definitely room for improvement. The biggest aim of the ETF is to ensure that the current programmes are recognisable as qualifications in the current job market. That is to say, their aim is ensure that candidates with these skills have a better chance of getting a job.
When will the reforms be introduced?
The current plan is for there to be one more review before August 2016. Following this, a report will be drawn up. This report will list, in detail, the recommendations for all of the changes that need to be made. This will include:
- The type of Functional skills qualifications which are needed in order to improve candidates’ lives, and ability to find work.
- How far the reforms should go in changing the current programmes/qualifications.
- How many hours new learners will need to put the new Functional skills qualifications plans into practice.
- How far the reforms should go towards forming a new National Adult Standard for Maths and English, which factors in employability.
After this report has been drawn up, the aim will be to put the new qualifications in the works for 2018, ushering in a bright new future for functional skills learners.