DCTPN - Weekly Digest
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Weekly Digest - 28 February 2017

Dear <<First Name>>

As we move into March the training provider sector continues to prepare for the changes that are due to come into force from 1 April. I know many of you have been extremely busy completing your bids for the Adult Education Budget, which closed last night, and in preparing new contracts to use with your employers and apprentices in readiness for the changes.

The changes will see the sector having to adapt to new working practices and processes, with employers having greater power over where and when to spend their Apprenticeship training funds. We will see the need for improved employer engagement activity and greater collaboration and negotiation between training providers and industry professionals. 

The Network recognises the need for training providers to access new commercial skills, to support this transition to a more client focused, demand-led approach. We are looking to offer an Employer Engagement workshop in Plymouth on 7 April for Network members, please see more information on this workshop later in the Digest. 

The Plymouth Training Providers met last week and at a lively meeting were joined by several speakers who provided important updates on a range of local topics and themes, including; the Sherford Development, the full roll out of Universal Credit across the City, Apprenticeship and NEET data and an introduction to a new scheme to engage young people with a new digital employability passport. Speaker presentations can be found later on in this Digest.

With National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) on the horizon - this year it runs between 6 - 10 March - there is a host of activity being planned to help raise awareness and celebrate success. A wide range of support material is available and includes; Toolkits to support training providers, employers, schools and MPs, a country-wide events map, and a range of branded templates for use by providers to support PR and marketing activity. The Government have also launched a new wave of activity around the 'Get in Go Far' theme, which has been used to highlight the benefits of apprentices. The latest campaign is focused on promoting Apprenticeships to employers. You can access the latest press release here. 

Prospects, NCS, will be using a specially themed roadshow bus to visit key towns and cities across the region during NAW. Training providers and employers from each area have been invited to get involved, with the aim of getting as many people as possible registered with the Find an Apprenticeship website. The roadshow schedule can be found here - please do pass onto your contacts and networks. 

There is still time for you to comment on the Productivity Plan for the region. You can access the green paper, Driving Productivity in the Heart of the South West by clicking here. Closing date for comments is 10 March 2017.

The publication this week of a City & Guilds report which examines just how prepared and informed employers are in terms of the Reforms and the Levy, could lead us to thinking that we still have quite a lot of work to do. You can read the reaction to the report by clicking here. 

I continue to be out and about, meeting existing and potential new members. I love seeing all the great work that is being done in our sector to train and upskill people of all ages. We play a major role in supporting the region's economic and social development, and are key to ensuring that the south west's employers have access to the skills they need. 

With best wishes


Employer Engagement Workshop
The changes in how Apprenticeship training is accessed and funded will impact in how training providers work with employers. From the 1 April large employers will be paying into a Levy, which they can then use to source Apprenticeship training of their choosing via a new digital service. Smaller employers will face new funding charges, which will see many of them paying for their Apprenticeship training for the first time. 

Training Providers will need to deploy greater commercial skill and acumen in this new world, especially in terms of building sustainable long-term relationships with their employer clients. 

Our one-day workshop, delivered by industry professionals Mentor, will support you and your teams in gaining vital employer engagement skills, including; developing provision to meet employer needs, creating a personal action plan to increase employer engagement levels and being able to identify potential employers to engage with whilst developing value propositions, which appeal to employers. Please access the workshop flyer here

We are currently seeking expressions of interest from Network members to attend this workshop - numbers are limited to just 12 so places will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

Please complete the EOI form and return via e-mail by  Friday 10 March.
Radio Plymouth - Apprentice of the Year
Radio Plymouth, in partnership with Network members, On Course South West, are searching for an outstanding apprentice - one that goes the extra mile and who has made a difference to their workplace.

Nominations are being sought from training providers and employers to find Plymouth's Apprentice of the Year. Closing date for nominations is midnight on Sunday 5 March.

To nominate someone you think deserves the title Apprentice of the Year please follow this link to the nomination page
Plymouth Training Providers Network - Speaker Presentations 
Last week's Plymouth Training Providers meeting heard from a number of guest speakers - their presentations can be found by clicking on  the individual links below:
Ed Coley - Plymouth City Council
Jacki Williams - JCP
Simon Wainwright - Plymouth City Council

The meeting also heard from Sherford Coordinator, Steven Ricketts, who updated attendees on the progress being made at the 1,200 acre site, located to the east of the City. Steve is keen to hear from providers wishing to get involved with the development, and a possible onsite training centre. If you would like to express an interest in getting involved, then please complete the EOI form and return to Steve. 

Our next Plymouth Training Providers meeting will be held on 11 May, further details will be sent out nearer the time. 

Delegates Hear the Latest Plymouth Updates
Steve Ricketts, Sherford Coordinator
Further Reading

To access the latest SFA update, which contains information on; 1. Closing soon - adult education budget (AEB) procurement; 2. New funding monitoring reports published; 3. Apprenticeship reforms: proposal to withdraw fourth batch of frameworks; 4. National Careers Week 2017 – get involved, please click here.

The latest SFA Communications Update can be accessed here
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