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Budget should do more for CPD, says Institute for Learning

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The recent budget is typically Brownite in its emphasis on money for education and training. The Chancellor pledged to provide additional funding for training and subsidies. He is determined to support the young which otherwise would be “abandoned to a future on the scrapheap”.

Toni Fazaeli, the chief executive of the Institute for Learning (IfL), has welcomed the Chancellor’s commitment to further education.

Ms Fazaeli said: “Making a success of the Chancellor’s announcements for further education and skills will rely on IfL members – teachers and trainers in the sector. Helping young people get the skills and experience they need is at the heart of professional teachers’ and trainers’ work, and we welcome the promised investment of £260 million for training and subsidies.”

However, the IfL believes the Budget could go further, in order to better support continuing professional development (CPD) for teachers and trainers in FE.

Ms Fazaeli continued: “We are, however, disappointed that the investment in continuing professional development announced for schoolteachers does not seem to be matched with a similar budget commitment for FE teachers and trainers, who are teaching the young people and unemployed adults affected by the recession, as well as teaching more science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

“Would it be Pollyannaish to expect similar special investment in CPD for teachers and trainers in FE and skills? Or would this make for a more rational world with new investment in CPD yielding consistently excellent quality of education and training across sectors?”

Under regulations since September 2007, all FE teachers and trainers have been required to register as a member of IfL and undertake CPD each year. These regulations have been put in place to insure that teaching professionals remain in good standing throughout their career, and that they keep their skills updated.

“IfL believes that CPD is central to professional teachers’ and trainers’ ability to update and hone their skills and vocational or subject expertise constantly. Any solutions to the recession depend on having a modern and highly skilled workforce – taught and trained by bang up-to-date and highly skilled professionals,” she concluded.

Solange Berchemin

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