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Level 4 and 5 Review

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Today’s Education in the Media blog looks at the consultation launch of Level 4 and 5 qualifications, which aims to boost the quality and access to these qualifications, following a major review of higher technical education. We also look at the Heathy Schools Rating Schemes, which was published today, enabling schools to voluntarily self-assess on a range of options including food standards, PE and travel time to and from school.

Level 4 and 5 Qualification Review

Today, Monday 8 July, the Department for Education has announced the launch of a 12-week consultation reviewing qualifications at Levels 4 and 5 that aims to boost the quality and access to these qualifications, following a major review of higher technical education.

The Education Secretary has called on the need for change in this area, urging parents to overcome the snobbery towards technical qualifications, and highlighting the need to ensure that students and employers have the best options available to them at Level 4 and 5.

The news was covered extensively in the media, including reports in: the Guardian (p.6), Times (p.16), FT, FE News and TES.

Education Secretary Damian Hinds said:

Employers across the country are crying out for more computer programmers, engineers, electricians and technicians in fields from advanced manufacturing to healthcare.

But the evidence shows that despite these qualifications putting people in prime position to take advantage of that demand and the opportunities for better wages and better prospects – not enough people know about them.

That needs to change. To help that change we need to make sure these courses are high quality, lead to good jobs and that people know about them.

We can’t legislate for parity of esteem between academic and technical routes, but we can make sure the options out there are clear and high- quality so students and employers know and trust that they will give them the skills they need.

Healthy Schools Rating Schemes

This morning, Monday 8 July the Department for Education published details of its healthy schools rating scheme. This is part of its commitment under the government’s Childhood Obesity Plan.

This voluntary rating scheme will be available for both primary and secondary schools where schools will engage in a self-assessment exercise and receive their rating based on their responses to questions on food education, compliance with the mandatory school food standards, time spent on PE in school and the promotion of active travel for journeys to and from school.

The first schools participating in the scheme will receive their reports and certificates in July 2019.

Children and Families Minister, Nadhim Zahawi, said:

We want to empower young people to make healthy choices from a young age so that they can lead healthy, active, happy lives.

Our healthy schools rating scheme will celebrate the many things that schools are doing right – and motivate them to do even better – meaning thousands more children will be able to improve their wellbeing through healthy eating and staying active.

It builds on the £320m-a-year PE and Sport premium that we invest in primary schools, and our £9m programme of holiday clubs offering healthy meals and fun activities for disadvantaged children this summer.

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