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Commission on Adult Vocational Teaching and Learning

One Year On Review

The Commission’s summary report It’s about work… Excellent adult vocational teaching and learning was published in 2013. It made a series of ten recommendations aimed at strengthening the VET system into the next decade and beyond.

Speaking before the launch of the report last year, chair Frank McLoughlin said “the report is not the end but the beginning of a process. It is intended as an agenda for action to raise our collective ambitions for vocational teaching and learning.”

Now a year later, Frank McLoughlin has published his One Year On Review. Launched at this year’s National VET Conference, he reflects on the early progress made in raising the status and quality of vocational education and training and recognises the contribution the Education and Training Foundation is making to the early implementation of the CAVTL recommendations.

Looking forward, Frank sets out four signposts for the future to further develop and strengthen the outcomes and impact of a first-class VET system. He calls for a new framework of recognised vocational pathways to higher level vocational learning. He also suggests the time is right for further development of the proposition for a National VET Centre to provide a dynamic research, development and innovation hub to support employers, colleges and training providers, and to complement BIS’s VET Research Centre.

Photo of Frank McLoughlin, chair of CAVTL

The Commission represented a once in a generation opportunity to raise the status of vocational teaching and learning, to promote its nature and heritage in its own terms, and to develop a robust vocational model.

Sustaining the movement to raise the quality, esteem and ambition of our VET system remains central to the task of re-building a strong, advanced economy for the first half of the 21st century. It is a shared endeavour.

The Education and Training Foundation has recognised this, and I would encourage it to continue to develop its strategic partnerships to harness the commitment from employers, education and training providers and government to realise the vision of a first-class VET system.

Frank McLoughlin CBE
Principal of City and Islington College and chair of the Commission on Adult Vocational Teaching and Learning

Messages of Support

Last year's CAVTL Report, It's about work…, marked a turning point in raising the standard of vocational teaching and learning in this country. During the past 18 months, a range of important developments have begun which build on the report's recommendations and which aim to improve the quality of technical and professional learning for students and employers.

As one of the commissioners, I am delighted with the impact that the CAVTL report has had in the world of colleges, training providers and employers. Frank McLoughlin's One Year On review identifies the progress made and the next steps which must be taken if we are to firmly establish a world class, employer focussed vocational education and training system.

Richard Atkins
AoC President and Principal of Exeter College

The UK Commission welcomes the publication of the CAVTL one year one review. Creating a workforce with the right skills and experience needs a VET system based on genuine collaboration between colleges and training providers, and employers, and this report demonstrates the significant progress that has been made over the last year towards this.

We look forward to continuing to work with the Foundation to address the higher level skills challenges set out so clearly in the OECD’s Skills Beyond Schools report launched at the VET Conference.

Michael Davis
Chief Executive, UK Commission for Employment and Skills

AELP welcomed the original CAVTL report and the recent review after 18 months. The report reinforced the message that the best vocational training and support can only be delivered through a close working partnership between employers and skilled training providers focussing on what their learners need.

Building the credibility of vocational training routes is a long term objective and we will continue to work with ETF and our other partners in building the reputation of employer focussed provision.

Stewart Segal
Chief Executive, Association of Employment and Learning Providers

The CAVTL has been a watershed report for vocational education and training in the UK and there can be no turning back from the milestones identified in this journey. Key concepts from the original report such as ‘clear line of sight to work’, ‘dual professional’, and ‘two way street’, have swiftly become part of our everyday language and have provided a much needed clarity of expectation and aspiration.

The Education Training Foundation are taking forward the key messages from the report.

As a board member and chair of the VET expert panel supporting officers to achieve maximum impact for our development projects, I am privileged to be able to play a small part in this crucial journey of development.

Peter McCann, Principal, Kirklees College
Education and Training Foundation Board Member

I am extremely grateful to Frank McLoughlin for his report. We are making good progress in our reforms to make education more closely aligned with the world of work, so that people have the skills employers want and need. Employer-led apprenticeships and industry designed training are already ensuring further education is responsive to the needs of UK business and benefits learners and the wider economy.

I welcome this review, which shows how far we have progressed since the CAVTL report was published last year, but there is clearly more to do. I encourage those working across Further Education to take the time to read and consider this report and its recommendations; and I look to the Education and Training Foundation to take forward the legacy of the Commission and this review.

Nick Boles MP
Minister of State for Skills and Equalities
Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, working jointly with Department for Education