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Introduction to industry placements - webinar for 2022 providers

This webinar offers guidance on industry placements for schools and colleges delivering T Levels from September 2022. The webinar was delivered on 12 November 2020.

Video transcript

We resolve any technical problems as soon as possible if anything arises during the call. So we will try and answer your questions as we go in the chat bar there at the side and we can also take uh, your questions at the end as well. Okay, so um, I will now pass over to our, um, industry placement team I think Chris is going to start the presentation this morning. Yeah thanks ever so much um, Stella. My name is Chris Flynn I work in the, uh, T Level industry placements team.

And myself and Kirsty Jacobs will be giving you uh, the uh, an overview into industry placement, and then uh, looking to answer any sort of questions that that you might have. So I thought it might be helpful first, just to give an overview of the of the context, uh, to the T Level program, uh, in a straightforward manner, um, as you can see from this slide. so T Levels are the new, um, two-year Level three technical study courses, they're designed to follow GCSEs, and will be available in colleges, and other further education providers, and, the first providers, I think around 44, um, are already now underway with the first three T Levels. Um, as you can see, 80 percent in the classroom and 20 percent on placement, that's pretty much an inversion of what you get with apprenticeships, broadly speaking.

So I hope that gives you an idea of what they're about. They provide the knowledge experience needed for skilled employment, further study, or moving on to a higher apprenticeship.

Could I have the next slide please?

So, why industry placements? Um.

Essentially, this goes back to, um, a look at the whole overview of technical qualifications undertaken by the Sainsbury panel back in 2016. We had an incredibly confusing picture of something like 12 000 qualifications out there, um, and a lack of clear progression routes. He made something like 34, he did make 34 recommendations, all of which the government accepted in order to streamline the system that we have before us. The government responded with the post 16 skills plan, which was published in July of 2016, um, setting out that we would streamline the current system by looking at the bewildering choice of qualifications that people have, I just mentioned twelve thousand. So there's a big separate exercise going on um, to look at all of those qualifications and only keep those that have a, a meter quality threshold, and point the way to, uh, skilled employment. So we'll have the three main, uh, routes, um, plus uh, an overhaul of, uh, qualifications more generally leading to a much more streamlined system. One of the things that was right at the heart of the Sainsbury panel recommendations, is that the current one to two weeks work experience just was insufficient, to enable students to develop the technical skills that employers need.

And, we know that the industry placement probably presents the biggest challenge, precisely because it is this significant step up from one to two weeks, to 45 to 60 days a minimum, of 315 hours. We also know that some students will prefer a high quality classroom based practical alternative to the academic route, they may not feel ready to leave an education setting to take an apprenticeship, and would prefer this practical mode of learning.
So yes as I say, a big challenge it is the unique selling point of the T Level. All of the evidence points to that I do know that it's a more rigorous qualification overall in terms of classroom hours, but the industry placement represents the big challenge, and the unique selling point from the point of view of students. So if we can have the next slide please. What are industry placements then? Well, time spent by 16 to 19 year old students learning and working in an organisation. And this is seen as absolutely key, that it is real life, hands-on, work experience, putting into practice the skills and knowledge that they would have learnt in the classroom, and they need to make a meaningful contribution. As I've touched on, their minimum 315 hours that works out approximately 45 working days, and an average of 350 hours. The reason that we sort of express it in hours even though days is probably more readily understandable, is because that there will be different working patterns of the students that we would need to work around, and we'll sort of come on to that as we go through the presentation. They need to be occupationally specific, developing students practical and technical skills, and they can be, in a single block day release, or a mix of the two. And this will depend on, um, the needs of the students, uh, take into account timetabling considerations on the part of the provider, and obviously the needs of the employer. So a single block, you know maybe completely appropriate in many cases, a mix of the two may be appropriate, um, elsewhere, uh, in, in order to make, to get the best possible experience for the student.

Can I have the next slide, please?

So before we come on to more detail about the industry placement, the different models, and so on and some of the ways in which you can approach industry placements, I just think it's important just to pause and say what should a high quality industry, industry placement, um, offer? What should it offer the student and what does it offer the employer? Well, it gives a student a chance to put into practice level three technical skills that they have learned as part of their T Level, and developing and honing the knowledge and skills they need to progress. They give students credibility, with prospective employers, that improve a student's confidence, competence, and employability, but they also give the, should give the employer the opportunity to develop and shape young people's skills to build their future workforce to meet their needs. And they should give an opportunity to you as providers, to ensure that, the course equips the students with the skills employers are looking for, and to make sure that the student is ready for the working world. Could I have the next slide please? So, how have we been developing industry placements? Well, we've carried out extensive user-centred research, listening to the sector to understand their concerns, significant engagement with employers, providers, and students, over a number of years. This included an industry placement pilot scheme, a few years back, where we had 21 providers involved, something like 1100 placements completed. And we have also, more recently about a year 18 months ago, had a whole series of roundtable events with employers, um, to look at, how might this need to be? How much, how the core principles might need to be applied in a range of different industries. And we had an evaluation of those pilots, and we had all of those discussions with employers. and a key message that was emerging from that, was one size doesn't fit all, and that therefore we need models that vary between industry course and employer type, but at the heart they must be rigorous, we must meet the, at least the minimum amount of hours that is required, but there are some variations that we will allow to meet those different needs. So what I'd like to do now is come on to the key challenges on the next slide and then we'll go on to, um, how we, address those challenges. And I think Kirsty are you going to come in at this point.

Yes, thank you Chris. Um, so this slide sets out the key challenges, uh, facing the delivery of industry placements. And, so as Chris mentioned earlier, one size doesn't fit all. So there are different workplace practices, across the various different industries and sectors, and obviously students have different backgrounds, and personal circumstances. Another challenge is encouraging employers to offer placements. Um, so, I'm making sure that they understand the different forms of work-related training that currently exists, so as well as apprenticeships. You've got traineeships, um, and T Levels, and obviously we've got kickstart, which is a DWP, run program. So it's helping them to understand the different forms of work-related training, and what best suits their needs. Another challenge is ensuring that placements are accessible. So, many businesses are in remote areas, or rural areas or even it may be the other way around, but students are in those rural areas and need to be able to access their placements. Another challenge is around health and safety, and security clearance. So, depending on the sector, uh, or the industry, students often require security clearance to, ought, to access, uh, sites, or have um, access to um, various different documentation and you know employer and intelligence, and information. Another key challenge is around the finance, financial and resource cost to employers. Erm, there may be costs around hosting a student, for example, IT equipment, liability insurance, etc. if we could move on to the next slide please? So as Chris mentioned as well, we have put in place, uh, some delivery models to respond to these challenges and to make sure that placements are high quality, meaningful, and deliverable across the different industries, and accessible to students from different backgrounds.
So the models that we've put in place include, allowing students to work with up to two employers. For their early years, uh, uh, placement, this may be, this may be more than two employers because they have to access, um, different early years age groups. On-site facilities can be used for part of the placement for students with SEND, and also for all of the placement for any students in young offender institutes. Up to 35 hours can be used, for occupationally relevant work taster activities, and this can be used to count towards the overall placement hours. A student's part-time work can be used to count towards replacement hours, as long as it is occupationally relevant to their T Level and at the right level. As Chris mentioned earlier as well, placements are recorded in hours rather than days, and this is to reflect for different working practices. We've also introduced some route specific models, and that's to make it easier to deliver the placements across different industries. So for digital and engineering and manufacturing, placements can take place at the route level, as opposed to the occupational specialism of the student, and for construction and engineering and manufacturing, one lead employer can facilitate the full placement hours, across their subcontractors or supply chain. And this is to ensure that students have the experience of the range of tasks or projects required, in that, and in that sector. If we can move on to the next slide please. We've also put in place a support package to make it uh, easier to deliver high quality placements. So since the 2018-19 academic year, we've provided nearly 115 million in capacity and delivery funding. Now this is to help providers put in place for infrastructure and resources needed to deliver industry placements. And there's another 52 million available this academic year. We've expanded the remit of the national apprenticeship service, to include T Levels, and they are providing a referral and matching service, and doing lots of awareness range, awareness raising of employers and making it easier for employers to be put in touch with providers. So, so far they have engaged over 16 000 employers.
We've also launched an employer support package. Now this comprises guidance, workshops, webinars and case studies. And this is designed to help employers understand what T Levels are, and industry placements, and to help them deliver high-quality placements. Also in place, is an employee support fund pilot. Now this is testing the impact of funding, on employers willingness to offer placements. So currently the pilot is taking place with CDF providers from four regions. We're also trying to increase the number of placements across the civil service and the public sector. so civil service HR, are coordinating industry placements across, um, government departments, and we're also working with the local government association, to raise awareness of, um, industry placements amongst local councils, and we're also looking at how we can influence government procurements and contracts of suppliers, to encourage them to host industry placements.
Also in July, we published what's called the industry placements delivery guidance. Now this is a really important document for providers, and employers, and it outlines the key roles and responsibilities for providers and employers, in offering and delivering high quality placements. And what you will be interested in, it includes in the annex, objective template documents. Now this gives examples of the key activities, and tasks that students could be doing on their placement, and it's designed to be used by you and employers to help design high quality placement. So it's really worth having a look at that delivery guidance. Alongside the delivery guidance, we also published a student guide. Now it's really important that students are adequately prepared for their placement before they start. so this guide is used to, um, is designed to complement a provider's existing, uh, material, to prepare students, but it signposts students to useful resources, and to help them understand the sorts of behaviours, and, that they should be displaying on, and on their placement, as well as links to useful resources to help them, uh, with prepare for an interview, write a CV, that sort of thing. We've also been doing some work to improve access to placements. So, the National Apprenticeships Service, has been doing lots of work to try and get SMEs to offer placements, as they are predominantly in rural areas. We've also increased bursaries for travel, and we've identified imaginative approaches to travel which we're going to be looking to promote more widely. And we've also appointed an organisation, who will be providing specific tailored support to 2020, 2021, and 2022 providers, to help you deliver high quality placements in line of our delivery guidance. If we could move to the next slide please.
Now you can't talk about industry placements at the moment without talking about the impact of COVID 19. So, we are well aware that COVID-19 is having an impact at the moment on the delivery of placements and is likely to do so for some time. However, it's really important to flag that we're not proposing any further changes to the policy just yet. What we don't want to do is to make any knee-jerk reactions, and changes now, that could ultimately compromise the quality of the industry placements. As Chris said the industry placements really is the jewel in the crown, for T Levels, so what we don't want to do is jump the gun, until we're clear on how COVID-19 is going to have an impact in the longer term. But what we are doing to reassure you is we are working very closely with providers and employers, we're listening to feedback, um, and we're, to understand the likely delivery challenges. So we're going to continue to do this monitoring throughout the Autumn term, um, to see if we need to go further with any support or flexibilities. And we will be communicating to providers if we need to do so. If we could move to the next slide please. So, this slide just outlines the various different resources which you may find, um, helpful, uh, so we've got the NAS helpline, we've got the industry placements policy framework, which outlines the different delivery models, we've got the industry placement guidance and resources on AAC websites, there's some case study videos on YouTube which hopefully you'll find helpful, and the delivery guidance which I talked about earlier, and also the T Level employer support website.

Thank you. Next slide.

And now we come to the, uh, Q and A section.

There's just been a question come through on the chat, and it's just says, 'for the health pathway what are the prospects of the NHS supporting industry placements'?

Yeah. So um, on that we have been uh, with us a National Apprenticeship Service have been doing lots of work with Health Education England, and to raise awareness of, uh, industry placements, and to work through some of the, um, delivery challenges. So they're really on board. So yes, and obviously at the moment with COVID-19, um, an impact on, on hospitals and NHS, is a little bit tricky. But, uh, yes, definitely NHS placements, um, is something we, we expect to see.

Thanks very much. Okay. So we've not had anything else come through just yet, but um, if I can just repeat to everybody if you have a question please either stick your hand up or just come in, um, on the chat. So there's just one coming through now, um, 'So do all placements require employers to conduct the interviews or can providers do that on their behalf'?

On the interview point, it's, it's a decision and a discussion that can that can take place between the provider and the employer. Um, some employers may want to conduct interviews, um, on, you know on their own, uh, or they may be willing to for providers to do that on their behalf. So it's, it's um, there's no set rules. So it's, it's up to the employer and provider.

Thanks Kirsty. Um, and there's just somebody with their hand up there. Rosemary, do you want to come in with your question? Yes please. I've lost my comment box at the bottom of the screen. Um, the resources in this video, are you going to be sending this out to us all automatically, so we can, keep looking through it? I would imagine we can do that, Sophie is that possible? Yeah, yeah certainly I'll be sending a follow-up email, and the follow-up email, there's no need for you to be taking notes. Right. No thank you. Yeah so the follow-up email it will have all of the slides and um, a video of the presentation in case, you want to, in case anybody from your, uh, college or school hasn't been able to attend today.

So if that's everything for now Rosemary, I've got a few more questions coming up in the chat? Thank you. Um, 'So if local NHS hospitals and trusts are not able to help, what other kinds of placements would meet the requirements for the supporting nursing strand'?

I think, I think at the moment we are, um, as, as we've said earlier we are sort of working very closely or rather the National Apprenticeship Service on our behalf, are working with the NHS and so on to ensure that those placements can be secured, um, we know it's difficult and there's a kind of perhaps a related question that's just come up on the amount of virtual placements that are sort of happening as well, on the NHS one, I think it's very important that there's, a lot of sort of pre-preparation and work, uh, with local, um, health trusts and so on, on the part of the provider, ahead of a T Level undertaking a, ahead of a student actually undertaking a T Level, making sure that they know what's involved, um, and it's also going to be important to keep parents on site as well. So we think that, um, there does need to be a lot of work on this, there does need to be a lot of work locally, the NAS, and sorry the National Apprenticeship Service sort of are leading on this work. But there's a role there for providers in preparing, uh, students, um, as well and that probably should begin before they actually start their sort of T Level so that they know what's in store. I'm on the direct question, I'm not quite sure what scope there may be for, for, uh, um, sort of if you will, sort of substitute, um, type jobs. I don't know, um. No, okay.
So, so on to the question about virtual placements that has just come up, um, I think it's very important to say that we are the government and the department, really values, that actual direct work experience with working with colleagues and doing that, in an environment alongside other colleagues. All of the types of things that you can pick up, that you can learn, the whole experience of these young people moving from a classroom based environment into a work environment, is, incredibly important, and therefore we're not rushing into having virtual placements, um, certainly not at the moment, and certainly that's not the intention. what we've got with COVID is clearly an evolving situation that is very difficult to see where it might be in six months time, but clearly that situation potentially has changed with the announcement this week about a vaccine, and we wait to see for instance how that plays out. But we are, very much committed to having the work...

Sort of behind the scenes, of what else that, you know, um, sort of what else we might do, but that is very much intention at the moment. So for instance we will be looking at things like blended working and so on. So it's not that we're ignoring this issue, but I don't want that to undermine what, what is a clear commitment, to a placement in the workplace.

Okay. So if we move on to the next question, 'How are you working with national organisations to ensure their regional offices are equally available for placements'?

So on, on this again, it's through the work of, um, of NAS, they're having conversations with employers, um, and looking at, you know where placements need to be, equally as well, and you know providers if they know there are organisations that are local to them, they can uh, reach out and build those relationships too. We've also got the, um, intermediary bodies, and laps, uh, working to, um, raise awareness of placements with, uh, regional, um, employers and officers.

Okay thanks Kirsty. Um, so this seems to be just one more question in the chat for now. So if anybody else has any further questions if you could type those in or put your hand up, um, because if we've just got this one last question, um, just another one come through as well, but, um, if we haven't got too many more questions then we'll be able to wrap up a little bit early.
So the next question that I've got here is, um, about part-time work counting towards placements. um, it's just saying, 'Where do you envision, envisage this apply in as most parts, for most students their part-time work is in hospitality and retail, so how flexible in terms of the relevance to the T Level, uh, will, will, will be if there are skills that are overlapping'?
We, we will actually expect that, this, any part-time work that is made to count certainly it would need to be at Level 3, and it will need to be occupationally specific. We're aware of where most sort of young people are likely to be working, and therefore the um, implications of, uh, you know the implications of how far this, this, um, this model might actually apply, but it does need to be at Level 3 and it does need to be occupationally relevant. We just want to make sure that if they, if they are in that position then they're not being penalized because we know that a lot of young people will be working part-time.

But I think Chris is the position generally, that actually for the vast majority of young people their part-time work in hospitality or retail won't count towards their placement, in reality? Essentially, essentially that is that is that is the case. Yes it won't. This is designed to help, it's not meant to be sort of, uh, we know that it's not a blanket, um, a solution. it's meant to help where it can.

Thanks Chris. On a similar vein, a question has just come through saying, 'Could hospital volunteering count towards the placement if that was occupationally relevant'?

Oh, that that in one can we take that back um, Sophie I, I, I would always come back to it needs to be in a real environment, um, at, uh, Level 3 putting into practice the skills, and knowledge that a student has, has learnt in the classroom, and that should always be the test against anything of this nature. But I'm not quite sure, that I know enough about what volunteering might entail, to be able to give such a specific answer to that. So I would always bring the provider back, to the, for the core elements.

Yes certainly I mean yeah we'd be able to, um, I've got everybody's details that's joined today so we'll be able to come back with, um, with an answer. Um, I've just got a couple of questions coming relating to, um, NAS, is one of which is, 'Is there anywhere we can get access to which companies NAS are working with local to us'? Um, I would have thought you just, could you not just ring them up? We've got their number on the resources, um, Kirsty is there something anything more than that?

I think that's a question we would have to take back to NAS. Um, there's obviously a matching service, um, but that is provided, um, but whether we can share the details of organisations, um, that they're working with locally, I, I'm afraid I'd I wouldn't want to say yes or no. I think we would have to, um, check that with NAS.

Thanks Kirsty. And, apart from NAS who are the organisations who can help deliver placements and in what areas? Do we know?

So NAS have a one-stop shop, and obviously, um, providers, I can, can develop relationships of employers locally in, in their area, and we know that some providers are working collaboratively, uh, to build their networks, um, so uh, you know there is that encouragement to reach out, and, and to have a you know the employer, uh, network strategy as well. There's the expectation that the capacity to, um, you know there is capacity to, to build that network to have, to secure enough placements and it may be that there are local, um, relationships that you have already with employers that you, you may want to build upon.

Kirsty, I was just going to come in and say that, yes you're absolutely right there. I was about to just mention the CDF the capital delivery fund, and the purpose of that fund was to make sure that, providers um, who will be delivering T Levels in future, are able to build up the capacity so that they can make those relationships with their local employers and that they can source placements, and I think in the guidance document which we've published I think the responsibility, does sit with the provider to, to set up and organise, and organise the placements for their students, and, and we're obviously doing everything that we can to make sure that we are, supplementing the efforts, that you'll be making to set up those placements through organisations, um, like NAS and our wider communications campaign. But I think that's the position isn't it Kirsty? Yeah, that's right.

Okay, so I'm just going to read out a question next on, um, placement grading, and then after that we've got three questions, that sort of that come into the same area relating to funding. So um, the first question is, 'is the grading for the placement assessed by the employer, or the provider or both'?

Um...placements, it includes what we call a set of progress indicators. So, ultimately, it's the provider who decides whether a student has, met, the completion criteria for the industry placement, um, and met the required number of hours. However the progress indicators, should be used by both the provider and the employer, to have a discussion, and identify whether the student has been able to demonstrate sufficient progress, towards their learning goals by the end of the placement. And it can be used to measure the student's progress throughout their placement, identify where the student might need any additional support, but ultimately, um, its, providers are responsible for making that judgment about whether they made sufficient progress, but the employer is expected to feed in because obviously day to day, they'll be seeing the work that the students doing.

Thanks Kirsty. So the next question is, 'Employer incentives... and kickstarter now available, are you considering rolling out pilot employer support to other areas, to even the playing field?'

Um, the, the employer support is not actually, uh, intended as an incentive. What it's, uh, primarily there to do is to meet the,the additional costs that might actually accrue, whether that's in terms of, uh, equipment, uh, it might actually be, training up a mentor, or somebody like, you know, or somebody similar to undertaker tasks like that. So it's not strictly speaking an incentive and shouldn't be, uh, confused as such. It, it's there to help with costs that might arise, uh, from having a student in place. And we're piloting it and therefore it's, it's too early to say, uh, at this point what the outcome is going to be, but clearly the very fact that we're piloting it, that we've extended that pilot even though we had to pause it, uh, initially during COVID-19 uh, suggests intent there. But um, we'll see what the outcome of the pilot is, and then see where we go when we get the outcome, of the pilot. Thanks Chris.

Um, and are the, are the details of the employee support package on the resources page, within the slides there?

Yeah. I haven't got it in front of me, but I think it's the one that says something, something industry placements, or something towards the bottom, of the resources slide. If it's not, when we when we send out all the information we'll make sure it's there Sophie. So, so people will be able to get it.

Yeah it's the last bullet point on that slide, yeah. Yeah it's the employee industry placements dot co dot uk webpage.

Yeah, thank you.

Thanks. um, and what support /staff funding will schools have to source placements will there be a regional placement advisor?

So Sophie, I don't mind coming in from a little bit on the school's point of view. so we are doing lots of work with schools at the moment, um, and through organisations, um, uh, like, like uh, the careers and enterprise company, and through the careers champions within schools, and working with the amazing apprenticeships website, um, to try and get as many messages about T Levels as possible out to schools and raise awareness with teachers and careers advisors about T Levels. Um, so we are very aware that it's really important that they know what T Levels are, and they are able to, advise their pupils accordingly while they're making their post-16 choices. Um, so but I don't think and Kirsty, Chris can, can correct me on this or the industry placement specifically, that, um, schools will have, um, staff specifically to help organise placements unless they are a school, that is, that has a sixth form that is delivering T Level. So I wasn't quite sure whether that question was about schools, as in schools, or to feed the schools, um, to all of you who are doing delivering placements, or whether it was about schools, who are actually delivering placements in their sixth forms. But as far as I'm aware, I don't think there'll be a regional placement advisor or coordinator, will there Kirsty, Chris?

No, no there won't.

So I hope that's all right on that one? If, if Michelle, if you wanted to put another comment in if we haven't quite, uh, answered that one, then please do.

Yeah, I think essentially, you know schools don't get sort of special or differential treatment from colleges, so what's available you know, to colleges, is likely to be available to schools, in terms of, in that regard, but other than that I haven't anything to add, Stella.

Yeah, I think Michelle's had a few, have been, had a few problems with dropping in and out of the meeting. So um, there's just one final question here, and it's, 'What contracting agreement support will providers have to do with employers or will NAS do this on providers behalf'?

So it's the providers are, um, are responsible for providing the support to the employers once the students in placement, and, and they're there providers should be helping with the employer to identify, the key tasks, and activities that the student is going to be doing on the placement, and there should be at least three conversations, throughout the placement to make sure the student is progressing, well, to identify any problems. So it's not a contracting agreement as such, but it's the providers are expected to provide that support, um, to the employers. so NAS will get the employers on board, well, when I say on board, NAS are there to do the awareness raising, um, if the student, if, if there's a match on the matching service, that will be handed over to the provider and the provider is then responsible for following up with the employer, and then putting everything in place then for the placement.

Okay thanks Kirsty. I think that's all the questions that we've had today. Um, if anybody has, if anybody thinks of any questions on the back of this, I know they've got your email, on the slides there when I send them out and everybody's had emails from me at the routes readiness inbox, so, um, if anybody does come up with any questions, please send them through to either email address.

Thank you Sophie. Just before we finish we've had one more question there, 'But do providers need to contact NAS to tell them that they're looking for employers?'

I, I, I don't think it's actually a specific requirement to do so, um, but it would make sense to do so, because of the matching service that the NAS can provide. So do, do take up any sort of, um, do take up that opportunity, but it's not a specific requirement. and I think also it's probably worth noting that obviously we keep NAS, up to date with um, all of the providers who are going to be delivering T Levels and the T Levels that they're going to be offering, so NAS know, about all of you who have signed up for 2022, and they know at the moment, what you're, intending to offer from September 2022. So when they are, out and about, well virtually out and about at the moment talking to employers, um, they will know where all of our T Level providers are across the country and what you're planning to offer. so um, I think as Chris said, there's no harm at all in you contacting them, and getting in touch and having a conversation with them, but they will already know, that you are planning to offer, and they'll already be, you know working that into their, into their contact and conversations with employers in various different parts of the country.

Okay.

Are there any more questions? Okay all right. Well thank you very much for joining and thank you for all of your questions, um, and engaging with us. As Kirsty and Chris said, this is definitely, um, a really important part of T Levels and something that students, are really excited about doing, and that the thing that attracts them to doing T Levels and we're really keen to make sure that they're, they're really successful. Um, the guidance that Kirsty and Chris have talked about and all the links and things that we'll send you, there's lots and lots of information, about how placements should operate and the things that you will need to do, and the things that you'll need to think about ,and lots of case studies, and templates and things like that. But do um, as I said get in touch with us if, uh, if there are, if you still have unanswered questions and you want to talk anything through with us.

Um, there's one more question here just before we finally finish. Um, 'What if there are not enough placements for employers in our area'? Kirsty do you want to have a go at that one or I can, I can answer?

Well I think it's important, um, if you're concerned, get in touch with NAS, um, and start, start doing the await awareness raising now, start trying to build links of employers, and, Stella is there anything that you wanted to, to add?

I think, I think I would say that, um, one of the reasons for, having a phased roll out of T Levels, um, and, and a phasing in the number of providers that can offer T Levels is that we're starting quite small, and will build up over time. So in 2022 you might only be offering, I don't know, 4 or 5 T Levels and you can build those up, as your delivery, uh, continues to roll out, so that you're not looking for huge numbers of placements, from, right from the start, that, that you can build up your employer links, and, um, and learn from a small number of placements and as you become more familiar with how to do all those things, how to set placements up, how to organise with employers, you're sort of starting from a from a smallish point and you're growing, so it's not a huge, huge task. Um, I think we're definitely aware that at the moment, um, some of our 2020 providers, and some of our CDF providers find it more difficult than others depending on, where they're located in the country and the kind of employers that there are around them. Um, but I think again, it's something that as they become more practiced at it, they are finding it, um, easier to secure placements and I think things like, thinking a bit outside the box, about, what type of employers, can offer certain types of placement? So, um, if you've got digital students, you know the vast majority of employers will have digital staff, it doesn't need to be a sort of stereotypically digital company to be able to offer a digital placement. So I think just trying to, to really think creatively about where you can find those, um, placements. Um, I think that's sort of the main so at the moment, I don't think that we're envisioning you know COVID aside obviously, um, that that into the first few years it should be a huge problem, and obviously as more and more employers become more aware of T Levels, so communications obviously is very important lots of employers aren't aware of them at the moment. As more employers are aware of them, and get involved with them, we hope that there will be more that are willing to offer those placements. So I think it is a little bit of a, um, you know we need to really get the roll out underway, and the communications underway, and get everybody, um, more practiced at organising and offering placements. Really and I think, that with time it will become something that everybody finds, easier to organise? I hope that helps. But at the moment I think we are, we know it's a challenge, but I think, we think it, it's achievable for, for all providers to find enough placements.

Okay. If there aren't any more questions, thanks again for joining, and please do keep in touch if you have any queries or anything that you would like, help from us with. And please do take up all the support that's available.

Thanks very much.

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