Our new functional skills tutoring for apprentices

Training Now has launched a new program of functional skills tutoring sessions for apprentices.

If you are currently doing an apprenticeship with Training Now and need support studying for your functional skills qualification in Mathematics, you can join our free, face-to-face sessions. The online video call meetings take place every Tuesday and Friday between 6 and 8pm.

It is a requirement of an apprenticeship that apprentices have or gain a level 2 (GCSE equivalent) qualification in English and Mathematics. British Sign Language qualifications are an alternative to English qualifications for whom this is their primary language.

Apprentices without the required qualification need to achieve this level prior to completion of their Apprenticeship. They are supported by their allocated Teaching and Learning Coach.

Although all apprentices receive mentoring sessions with their Teaching and Learning Coach at least once a month, Training Now is committed to opening pathways for individuals to seek further assistance with their studies.

The three-month trial of functional skills tutoring is part of that commitment. It offers an opportunity for those currently studying for their Level 2 Maths qualification to receive additional tuition alongside their normal mentoring and online learning.

Director of Training Now, Scott Jones explains:

“We are trialing Maths tutoring as this has been identified as a key point of failure for apprentices. By providing that additional face-to-face support, we are giving apprentices a chance to talk through areas they find challenging in a way they are unable to do on the e-learning platform.”

Apprentices complete the qualification through Skills Forward, an e-portfolio system which enables a greater autonomy over how and when the individual learns compared to traditional, classroom-based teaching.

While the virtual learning enables apprentices to work their studies around other commitments, Training Now acknowledges the importance of providing a range of support services to assist them in gaining their qualifications.

Delivery Manager, Jo-anne Mackay added:

“Everyone learns differently and, by setting up these sessions, we are giving our apprentices a choice in how they learn. The tutoring is not there to replace the e-learning platform, but it gives apprentices a chance to ask questions, and engage in discussion about their learning.”

A month into the service, the functional skills sessions have a 100% pass rate and continue to welcome apprentices weekly. With this success, Training Now is looking at further increasing the support services it provides.

Functional skills tutoring in level 2 English and ICT are set to accompany the current Maths sessions and careers advice service for apprentices in the coming months.

To find out more, or to join the free functional skills tutoring sessions, contact your Teaching and Learning Coach or call: 01305 897655


Staff training: How Training Now supported Agincare’s new international recruitment initiative

Last month, Training Now supported Agincare International by providing a bespoke two-week staff training program to five new employees from India.

Shortly before their arrival in October, Agincare International, the global recruitment arm of Agincare, approached Training Now for a combination of mandatory and tailored courses to their new job role within Agincare.

Tailored program of staff training

Within two weeks, Training Now, which is situated close to the Agincare head office on Portland, put together a tailored program of courses which combined the wishes of Agincare International directors and their own expertise in delivering high quality staff training.

At the start of their training, each international employee received a training programme relating to the courses they were undertaking and a reflective diary. Jo-Anne Mackay, Delivery Manager for Training Now explained-

“We gave them a pack containing the training program they would be undertaking and a reflective journal for them to fill out each day. It is important that people reflect back on learning.”

Over their two-week training period, the five new employees completed a three-day mandatory induction training which meets the requirements of the care certificate standards. They were given training specific to their new roles including end-of-life training, person-centred dementia care and moving and handling.

On the first day we focus on life in Britain and the new cultures that the employees will be facing in their daily lives.

Jincy, who was an Intensive Care nurse in India, said:

“My favourite was the moving and handling training. It was really fun and engaging.”

They also completed their First Aid training and were presented with their Level 3 certificates on the final day.

In addition to classroom based learning, they also visited Crecy Care Home in Weymouth. This afforded them a unique opportunity to become familiar with the care setting they would be going into at the start of November.

Bespoke Staff Training for your Business

To suit the unique requirements of Agincare International, it was important to adapt the way training was delivered. Jo-Anne explains;

“As this was their first time in the UK, we wanted to ensure they had one consistent trainer. We had to rejig the schedule to suit this but it was important. Consistency helped them to relax and enjoy the training.”

Training Now values the importance of consistency and comfortability in learning. Whether it is a short course or an apprenticeship, staff training is a pathway towards achieving career goals. That pathway should be both enjoyable, and a positive memory that they can reflect on when in the work environment.

For the full two weeks of training, the new employees were accompanied by Trainer, Mandy who took on the role of teacher and mentor.

Reeja, who comes from Thiruvalla in India, said:

“Mandy is a wonderful teacher. She has given us hope and a good time.”

By ensuring that the trainees were taught by Mandy whenever possible, they were able to relax and enjoy the experience; forming professional relationships in the process.

More than just training

By the end of the two weeks together, the employees, who had been unknown to each other less than a month before, had formed close bonds and shared memories.

Describing what the training had meant to her, Reeja added:

“It’s about the emotional bonding with training. We have all become close with Mandy too.”

On their final day in the classroom, the group of trainees expressed their gratitude to Mandy by presenting her with a thank you card.

The five employees have now begun their placements in care homes across the south of England and Agincare International hopes this will only be the start of their global recruitment initiative.

Why Training Now?

We offer a wide range of staff training courses tailored to your specific needs. We can:

  • Embed your own ways of working and policies into the course content, providing you with a bespoke staff training package.
  • Deliver our courses to suit you – from half a day to a full week, or as refresher training.
  • Provide staff training in your own venue, or at one of our 12 training venues across the country.
  • Deliver our courses as e-learning, distance study or in a training room.
  • Create bespoke courses and training programmes for you.

If you are seeking bespoke staff training for your employees, contact Training Now on: 01305 897655