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16-19 Performance Tables and Qualifications Categories

This will be the first year that the new 16-19 Performance Tables and Qualifications Categories are reflected in the reporting of student results. Pearsons have provided a very helpful guide to understanding how these changes will be reflected in the results.

Technical and Professional Education

Vocational qualifications are undergoing changes. The Paper below provides information on these changes including the new terminology.


16-19 Study Programmes

Professor Alison Wolf, in her review of vocational education, recommended that study programmes be introduced to offer students breadth and depth and without limiting their options for future study or work. The Department consulted on proposals for study programmes and in July 2012 published its response and its plans for implementation.

From September 2013, new 16 to 19 study programmes were introduced, supported by changes to post-16 funding. All students in full or part-time education aged 16 to 19 will be expected to follow a study programme tailored to their individual needs, education and employment goals, including students with learning difficulties and/or disabilities.

Each Study Programme should:

  • Provide progression to a level higher than that of their prior attainment
  • Include qualification(s) that are of sufficient size and rigour to stretch the student and are clearly linked to suitable progression opportunities in training, employment or higher levels of education.
  • Require students to work towards GCSE A* – C grade in Maths and English (or other qualifications that will act as a stepping stone for achievement of these qualifications in time).
  • Allow for meaningful work experience related to the vocational area of the Study Programme, which develops employability skills and/or creates potential employment options.
  • Include other activities unrelated to qualifications that develop the skills, attitudes and confidence that support progression.

The balance between these activities will vary depending on the needs of the learner.

Study Programmes were introduced at the same time as changes to the funding for 16-19 programmes.

The Institute for Learning provides a useful toolkit that aims to support practitioners wishing to develop effective study programmes for 16 to 19 year olds.

The Association of Employment and Learning Providers has developed a useful guide to Study Programmes and a Readiness Toolkit. These plus other useful information and documents related to Study Programmes can be found on their website here:



The primary objective of Traineeships is to equip young people with the skills and experience they need to secure an Apprenticeship or other good job. In doing so, it would aim to support young people's progression into and achievement in sustainable employment, reduce the proportion of young people who are not in education, employment or training (NEET), and make a positive impact on youth employment.

The content of a traineeship consists of three core elements:

  • A focused period of work preparation training.
  • A high quality work placement.
  • English and maths for young people who have not achieved a GCSE Grade C or equivalent.

Traineeships are a strand of 16-19 Study Programmes targeting students who are committed to securing an Apprenticeship or other employment.

From September 2013, Traineeships have been available to 16-24 year olds, will last no longer then 6 months and provide a high quality work placement. Only providers judged by Ofsted to be ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ will be able to offer Traineeships.

Matthew Hancock (Minister for Skills) has released the document “Traineeships: Framework for delivery” which provides employers, education and training providers and young people with information about traineeships. Please see the attached link to the Traineeships Framework for Delivery:

Further information on Traineeships can be found here:

The Skills Funding Agency has a range of useful information here:

DBS and Extended Work Placements

For the purposes of Safeguarding and work experience the following information needs to be noted.

Extended work experience is work experience with an external employer that takes place on one or more days a week over a term or more. The legal requirement below applies to both pre-16 learners and post-16 students when the latter are undertaking a ‘school endorsed activity’ i.e. work experience is included in the 16-19 Study Programme.

Schools should make sure that the following process is in place.

  • If a student is working with an employer for more than 4 days in a 30 day period the employer/supervisor must be DBS checked.
  • The school the student attends is required to carry out a DBS check on the employer/supervisor as part of safeguarding.
  • If an employer offering extended work placements has stopped working with a school for 3 months or more this is deemed to be a ‘break in service’ and a new DBS check has to be completed.
  • In Youth Connexion’s experience, employers are usually only working with one school at a time; however where an employer is working with more than one Hertfordshire school only one DBS check is required.
  • Schools should communicate with each other to obtain written confirmation that a check has been undertaken and that there has been no ‘break in service*’ since the DBS certificate was issued. Records of this communication need to be retained by individual schools as part of the safeguarding policy.
  • An employer offering extended work placements is classed as a Volunteer so the Hertsguard administration cost to the school as of May 2016 is £16.50.
  • Any queries regarding these requirements should be addressed to the school’s designated Safeguarding Officer and not to the Youth Connexions work experience team.

*Break in service – 3 months or more not working with the student/school, not including school holidays.

Please make sure that this is forwarded to all staff in your school so they are aware of the legal requirements.


Other Curriculum Information

AAT Accounting Qualifications

The AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) are the UK’s leading Awarding Body for Accounting & Bookkeeping qualifications from levels 1 – 4.

Traditionally the qualifications were delivered by FE Colleges or Private Training Providers but over the past two years, in line with RPA requirements, AAT has encountered large growth in the number of schools and 6th Forms engaging with these qualifications adding them to the Curriculum offer for Key Stage 5 pupils. Across the country, schools are recognising the need to diversify and innovate their 6th Form offer in order to retain pupils beyond the age of 16.

The Level 3 Accounting Diploma contributes 160 UCAS points and contributes to school performance tables, the Level 2 Diploma will appear on performance tables from 2016/17. The qualification provides excellent progression opportunities on to University or Higher Apprenticeships and is an excellent entry point for students wishing to progress on to ACCA or CIMA accredited Accounting qualifications at Level 5 upwards. The vocational nature of the qualification also provides students with essential skills that will enhance employability and opportunity in the future.

Schools interested in finding out more should e-mail at AAT.


Ofsted FE Good Practice

Ofsted have produced a report that summarises the most significant features of outstanding teaching, learning and assessment in the further education and skills sector and the factors that contribute to these. It also identifies several areas where more improvement is needed. Her Majesty’s Inspectors visited further education colleges, sixth form colleges, independent learning providers, employer providers and providers of community learning and skills between September 2013 and April 2014, as well as using evidence from inspections to inform the report findings.

The report can be found here:


Learner Records Service

The Learner Records Service fits within the heart of the learner experience and is designed to support learners at all levels to access, manage and use their own achievement information - such as qualifications, awards or training received as they progress through education, training and lifelong learning.

The Learning Records Service, part of the Skills Funding Agency, provides shared services across the education sector. The Service is built on the principle of collect once, use many times and used by all that are entitled to do so. It supports the whole of the education sector.

Further information about the Service can be found here: