Funding is a bit of a dirty word in the industry. It is the role of all providers in the sector to help people develop their skills in whatever way they can. However, there is still a well-meaning but misguided perception that makes funding seem more like revenue stream than a support stream.
Training providers no longer have the luxury to see LSF (and other vital funding streams) as somehow exploitative of learners with additional learning needs (ALN). There is a legal and moral imperative to claim funding and ensure that providers use it to support all learners in the most comprehensive way possible. In essence, we shouldn’t feel squeamish about the idea of claiming funding if it provides crucial support to learners with ALN.
Our upcoming webinars
We want to invite you to our webinar hosted by AELP on 12 May to explore a new perspective on your learners and what funding can do to support them. Louise Karwowski, our Head of Science and Neurodiversity Expert, will be facilitating the webinar. Alongside her, Karl Bentley, the Senior Manager for RSM Risk Assurance Services LLP, will lend his invaluable industry knowledge as an ESFA auditor. But don’t worry, if you can’t make 12 May, we’re hosting a similar webinar on 4th June. Keep reading to gain an insight on what to expect.
What can funding do for your learners?
In our current climate, it is more important than ever that providers find new and effective ways of supporting their learners and use allocated funding to do so. LSF is a way to provide much-needed equipment, staff, and training. It can also go towards the costs of implementing reasonable adjustments for a learner’s end-point assessment. Many learners will require extra support that providers may not currently set-up to deliver. This situation is where LSF can do the most good. So, how can providers prove they’re supporting all their learners sufficiently without it?
With average identification rates for learners with ALN at only 19.6% on the RoATP list in 2018/19, we want to encourage providers to use LSF to support their learners with additional learning needs more actively. Working to increase identification rates through cognitive assessment ensures that all learners who require funded support get access to it. It also ensures that providers are meeting the ESFA funding requirements to show that the support they deliver represents good value for money. Even with providers working tirelessly to continue their training programmes remotely, it can be harder to provide learning support for learners with ALN without regular face-to-face meetings.
However, using online systems means that learners can still be assessed and supported through distance learning. Learners can access learning strategies and resources at any time, and on any device, from home. Likewise, providers can ensure learners remain engaged with their programme through automated text or email reminders, lending encouragement and giving positive feedback for completing strategies. And one-to-one sessions with tutors can still go ahead via webchat, email, video, or phone call to suit the learner’s preference – giving both learners and staff more flexibility and guaranteeing support regardless of circumstances.
There is more to be done to support learners with ALN, and we should take every opportunity to make this happen. We are all dealing with challenges at the moment, but it’s important to understand that some will be experiencing more significant challenges because of their additional needs. Using funding to access vital resources for these learners can only be a good thing. And LSF is becoming a higher priority for providers looking to improve their learners’ journey and overall achievement.
We hope to see you at our webinars and remember to save the date! We’d love to hear your questions and support you in your journey to inspire and fund your learners’ success. But you don’t have to wait for these webinars! You’re welcome to get in touch anytime through our Contact Form or request a demo to learn more.