From education to employment

Department for Education and Skills (DfES) Strategy Unit Publish Training Ideas

The Government have made it clear that their priorities for the future of the nation will see them plough ahead with their education policies even in the face of political opposition.

Apart from following the recommendations of the Foster Review of Further Education, which found that FE should be the focus for preparing the nations” skills set for competition in the global marketplace, and the focus on citizenship education, the Government have remained committed to tackling the scourge of low adult literacy and numeracy.

Embedding Skills for Life the Key

To this end, the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) has encouraged the development of a strategy unit to meet this challenge. This unit is known as the Skills for Life Strategy Unit (SfLSU), and is designed to help to develop successful practices and procedures to encourage adults with low levels of literacy and numeracy back to education and training. It is generally accepted that learners are motivated to improve these skills when they can see that they”re essential and relevant to their vocational goals.

Another area that is often neglected in the bid to improve the sector is the difficulties that can often be faced by teachers and trainers in vocational subjects to ensure that their learning programmes include the teaching and development of the literacy, language and numeracy skills that underpin vocational achievement. To meet this specific challenge, the SfLSU has published and distributed 20 files of the “Skills for Life Materials for Embedded Learning”.

Each of the files provides teachers and trainers with ideas and new approaches for embedding literacy and numeracy in vocational contexts. The subjects included are: Trowel occupations; Social care; Horticulture; Family Health; Effective communication for international nurses; Catering; Hospitality; Retail; Warehousing; Entry to Employment; Sports leadership; Painting operations; Production line manufacturing; Cleaning; Skills for construction; Food Hygiene; Health and safety; ICT; and First Aid.

The Standards Unit and the SfLSU are close partners in ensuring that the quality of support offered to teachers and training is of the highest calibre possible. Teachers and trainers can use the Skills for Life materials alongside the Standards Unit teaching and learning frameworks, all in a bid to remove barriers to education and training.

Jethro Marsh

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