Several apprenticeship flexibilities introduced to ease the delivery of apprenticeship training during Covid-19 are due to end at the close of 2021.
The Institute first introduced temporary measures in early 2020 to provide continued support to businesses, apprentices, and training providers. These measures have been extended several times since.
However, now the Institute plans to stop the following flexibilities on 1st January 2022 (Covid-19 pending):
- The extension to the length of the End Point Assessment period
- Changes to the makeup of assessment panels
- Allowing other suitable evidence of achievement in place of mandated qualifications
An Institute spokesperson said:
“Over the last year and a half, flexibilities have made a huge difference to tens of thousands of people, helping apprentices to move forward despite the pandemic. We want to take what we have learnt and keep on improving, but also give stability – which is why nothing is changing until 2022.”
Retained Apprenticeship Flexibilities
Despite the withdrawal of the above flexibilities, several more are staying in place for now following feedback from stakeholders across apprenticeships.
The seven apprenticeship flexibilities the Institute will keep are:
- Remote Assessment gateway sign off
- Pauses between elements of End Point Assessments
- Assessment element delivery being in any order
- Simulated environments instead of observation in workplaces
- Remote delivery of assessment (including invigilation)
- Assessments taking place outside of usual venues
- Assessment exams being online instead of on paper
If you face continued challenges preventing your apprentices from completing End Point Assessment, you may ask for the outgoing apprenticeship flexibilities to be retained. Speak to your End Point Assessment Organisation (EPAO) or External Quality Assurance Provider in the first instance. They can then pass the request on to the Institute. They must do this by 1st October 2021 to guarantee a resolution before the cut-off date.
If you have any inquiries about this approach, please contact the Institute by email at email@example.com. Use the following title in the subject box: EPA_Covid 19 [your organisation name].
If you currently have learners in training, now is the time to think about their End-Point Assessment.
Instructus Skills are an ESFA-approved End-Point Assessment Organisation with a flexible, apprentice-centered approach. Our quality-assured 98.6% pass rate (83.3% at distinction level) demonstrates the efficacy of our pioneering, cost-effective Remote Assessment service. See our range of standards here.