From education to employment

Staff will be able to gain the equivalent of an A-level in management

McDonalds have been given the status of an awarding body meaning the fast-food chain can now train up staff in new nationally recognised level 3 qualifications.

Flybe, the airline, and National Rail have also been given the go ahead by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) to develop in-house accredited qualifications equivalent to A-levels or the new diplomas. They are the first three firms to take advantage of a Government initiative to accredit company training schemes and give them the same recognition as national qualifications.

John Denham, Secretary of State for the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills said of the scheme: “It is right that we recognise and accredit employers that have shown a commitment to training and developing their staff. This is an important step towards ending the old divisions between company training schemes and national qualifications, something that will benefit employees, employers and the country as a whole.”

The employer recognition scheme will form part of the new Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF), which is currently being trialled in many different businesses and sectors

McDonalds will be offering a “Basic Shift Management” course to its management staff, covering areas such as human resources and finance. David Fairhurst, McDonald’s Senior Vice President said: “Receiving official awarding body status is an important and exciting step for McDonald’s. As a progressive employer we are committed to taking a leadership position on training and skills. We want to ensure that our approach to recruitment, training, and development continues to create real opportunities for social mobility.”

Meanwhile Flybe will begin their “Airline Trainer Programme” later this year. Courses will cover everything from engineering to cabin crew training. They will be based on Flybe’s current training but modified to achieve the awarding criteria for the QCF.

Simon Witts, Director of Safety, Quality & Training at Flybe said: “Through the test and trials of the Qualifications and Credit Framework and by becoming an accredited training provider we will have the ability to deliver officially recognised courses specifically designed to cater for our staff and business needs, increasing our competitiveness and recognising the hard work of our employees

Flybe’s qualifications will range from Level 2 to Level 4 while Network Rail’s Level 2 & 3 qualifications will be in track engineering

Rosie Spowart

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