WAMITAB is pleased to announce the appointment of Karen Slade to a newly created role as Training and Assessment Manager with responsibility to develop the organisation’s plans to seek approval to become an End-point Assessment Organisation.

Speaking about the new venture, Chris James, CEO at WAMITAB, said: “We are committed and keen to be involved in the assessment process for the new apprenticeship standards. Whilst the standards for the sectors in which we operate, waste and resource management, cleaning and facilities management are still in development, we consider it important that we are organised and prepared for when they become available. Employers in the sector will welcome the opportunity to work with a familiar face who understands the workplaces they operate in.”

He continued: “We are pleased to have Karen as part of the WAMITAB team, as she has knowledge of WAMITAB’s market offer and has gained valuable experience of managing qualifications in a wider setting.”

Karen has a broad background in Learning and Development and Assessment including Apprenticeships. Karen has come from a regional employers’ organisation that supports the local authorities of the South West, where she was responsible for providing end-to-end candidate support for all those undertaking qualifications with ILM, Pearson and WAMITAB.

In her new role, Karen will be reporting to Mark Hyde, Commercial Director at WAMITAB, who said: “We are pleased to welcome Karen to the WAMITAB team, to strengthen our offer in the apprenticeship market and also to broaden our portfolio to reflect the changes in the world of education and skills. Whilst we wait for the new apprenticeship standards to be available it is still business as usual for the existing apprenticeship frameworks in our sector in England.”

In May 2017 Trailblazer apprenticeship standards were launched in England along with a different funding mechanism that sees employers with a wages bill of over £3m making a contribution in the form of the Apprenticeship Levy. The change includes a gradual transition from the old frameworks to the new apprenticeships standards, which contain information on on-programme training and an end-point assessment to confirm apprentices have demonstrated that they have met the standard. It is a requirement that an independent EPA organisation must carry out the end-point assessment of each apprentice to ensure a robust and true outcome.

WAMITAB is in the early stages of developing our offer to become an end-point assessment organisation, which involves the design and development of the content of the end-point assessment in line with the assessment plan. The types of assessment that could be expected are test questions, project topics or guidance for interview formats. Only organisations on the Register of Apprenticeship Assessment Organisations are able to carry out the end-point assessment. The end-point assessment process is separate to any qualifications or other assessment that the apprentice may undertake during training but they will not be able to achieve the apprenticeship without passing the end-point assessment.

Employers in the sectors are working together to design new Standards and assessment plans for apprenticeships but until these are approved for delivery, the frameworks continue to be available for employers keen to take on apprentices in waste and resource management, cleaning and facilities management. These old frameworks do not require an end-point assessment as they comprise separate vocational qualifications that are assessed in the usual way by assessors working though approved training organisations. The funding process is the same for frameworks and standards, with support accessible and funding is through the apprenticeship levy for large employers and ‘co-investment’ rate model to support employers who do not pay the levy.