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LSC accredits providers with a new standard.

The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) yesterday celebrated the achievements of 22 providers in delivering high quality training to employers. At an event in London these providers were recognised as being the first to achieve this new voluntary accreditation.

The new standard highlights excellence in the two areas that employers have told us are most important to them – provider responsiveness to employer needs and provider excellence in a particular vocational area.

David Lammy MP, Skills Minister, said: “Training is essential to any successful enterprise and we are determined to make high quality skills training accessible for all. The new standard highlights excellence in provider responsiveness and will be a mark that employers can trust.”

A key development of the standard from previous accreditation schemes is that it is not attached to public funding or investment and will be open to both publicly and privately funded organisations providing higher and further education. In addition, accreditation is verified by employers, meaning that the criteria for achieving the standard reflects their needs.

Jaine Clarke, Director of Skills for Employers, LSC, said: “It is fantastic that the first 22 colleges and training providers accredited have been acknowledged for their achievement. This is a positive sign for the further education sector as training providers aim to improve their offer to respond to the needs of employers.

“There are numerous benefits of this new standard to both employers and providers such as increasing the quality of training provision, while encouraging employers to invest more in training. I hope this motivates others to follow suit and work towards achieving the new standard.”

The standard has been extremely well-received to date by the sector and a further four training providers have recently received accreditation; taking the total to 26 having achieved the new standard. These are likely to be joined by further training providers over the coming months as more continue to apply and be assessed.

The new standard will feed into National Skills Academies as they will work with providers who have achieved the new standard as their delivery partners.

City of Sunderland College is amongst the accredited providers. Lesley Griffin, Director of Employer Engagement at the College said of the achievement: “We are delighted to have achieved the standard and be here celebrating with other providers. Knowing that our robust external assessment process was validated by our employers is a real credit to our team.

“The standard is very beneficial to our sector and it will help employers easily recognise which providers are fully responsive to their needs in providing them with business solutions.”

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