This project, funded under the DfE Sharing Innovative Approaches and Overcoming Barriers in Delivering 16-19 Study Programmes, is designed to support and enhance the development of these programmes. It builds on the ACER managed Traineeship Staff Support Project (TSSP). Key for the TSSP project was to show how the sector could engage young people in maths and English learning, building progression routes that eventually lead through to GCSE. In particular, one aspect of the project identified the differences between the content and delivery of Functional Skills to that of GCSE Maths and English programmes. A bigger challenge is how to move significant numbers of learners on full-time vocational Study Programmes from a maths/English GCSE D grade to a C.
Pockets of good practice in relation to GCSE were uncovered as part of the TSSP project and it is this type of effective practice that this project would aim to uncover and share. For example one provider was keen to show learners where they were covering the content of a GCSE syllabus, highlighting the overlaps to build learner confidence and encourage learners to register for a GCSE qualification. This provider was also signposting learners to additional resources for remote learning to enable them to work at their own pace and increase their chances of achieving GCSE accreditation.
This project will support colleges and providers to help young people on their journey from Functional Skills and other stepping-stone qualifications to GCSE provision. It will provide concrete examples of approaches, strategies, techniques and resources being used to make that shift for learners to jump from grade D to grade C GCSE. It will also respond to the staff development needs already identified through the Maths and English Enhancement programmes led by ACER on behalf of the region.