Despite these challenging and unprecedented times, achieving Functional Skills remains an integral part of apprenticeship qualifications. Judi Wheeler, National Delivery Director at JTL, discusses its Functional Skills offering and the importance of apprentices completing these activities.
What are Functional Skills?
Functional Skills focus on the ability to apply maths and English to different contexts, enabling apprentices to function confidently, effectively and independently in life and work. It is imperative that employers continue to encourage their apprentices to achieve these skills, as without maths or English qualifications they will be unable to complete their apprenticeship.
How does the process work?
Once an apprentice starts with JTL, they will be required to complete a maths and English assessment through online learning tool, bksb. It is vital that the apprentice completes this as their own work, as receiving help could result in them being removed from their course.
Following on from the initial evaluation, the apprentice will be required to complete a diagnostic assessment, which will result in them being given an individual learning plan on the online system. This should be worked through in their own time and it is important that employers encourage their apprentice to complete these tasks on a regular basis.
Apprentices who have not yet achieved their GCSE Grade C or (new Grade 4) in maths and English, will be invited to take part in three delivery days for each subject: maths, English and ICT if required. Each learner will be allocated a dedicated Functional Skills tutor who will work with them to make sure that they have improved on those topics identified from their diagnostic assessment. To ensure that they are fully prepared to take their Functional Skills test(s), some learners may be required to attend additional days.
JTL will notify employers when these delivery days are taking place, to ensure enough notice is provided to allow the apprentice to attend.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Functional Skills training is currently being delivered one to one via telephone or by Smart Sessions through Zoom. JTL’s online learning platform is still available for learners to access.
For any further information about Functional Skills requirements, employers should speak with their local Training Officer or contact JTL’s Customer Support Centre on 0800 085 2308 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.