Tom Bewick, Chief Executive of the Federation of Awarding Bodies (FAB)

The principle of technical educational reforms, as first identified by the Sainsbury review, is absolutely welcomed by the awarding industry.

The UK really needs to up its game. We need to ensure that the equivalent of the academic gold standard route of A levels is transferred across to real, high quality technical options for our 16 to 18 year olds in the future. 

Tom is totally behind T levels as a concept but acknowledges that previous technical reforms haven't always got it right in their delivery and implementation. 

T level Delivery

There has been a lot of talk at policy level about what T levels are expected to achieve. We are now in the important stage where the Government are looking for a single awarding licence for each of the three T levels being launched in September 2020. Concerns have been raised about whether the single licencing approach could potentially lead to a monopoly in relation to qualifications.

The Government has set off down that track, what FAB have to ensure now is that the relationship between Government and the awarding industry is one of co-creation, a partnership and are now in discussions about commercial terms to ensure that T levels are a success. 

Immediate Priorities

Time is the watch word around T levels in general, time is not on the Governments side when it comes to the successful implementation of T levels. Over the summer, as part of this competitive dialogues phase, will ensure that the commercial relationship with Government is the right one.

If that relationship is right, in the same way that the A level system is, that has got to benefit learners in the long run. No one is challenging the way A levels are done as a gold standard, we want to see that gold standard extended to T levels.


How do we implement an important reform that does not go the way of all the other technical reforms for the past 150 years? 

Click the link below to hear Tom Bewick, Chief Executive of the Federation of Awarding Bodies (FAB) as he talks to FE News about T levels at the AELP Summer Conference at the AELP's 2018 Summer Conference.

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