Keep funding for existing technical qualifications, government urged

ScreenSkills has raised concerns about the practical implementation of new technical qualifications in a response to a government consultation.

Creative Careers Programme launch © Angelica Bomford

ScreenSkills has raised concerns about the practical implementation of new technical qualifications in a response to a government consultation.

The government is implementing new T-levels, which will be an alternative to A-levels and apprenticeships for those students who want to pursue a more vocational path at college.

Keen that the new qualification is a success, it is considering only funding T-levels, apprenticeships, A-levels and GCSEs at level 3 and below (level 3 is equivalent to A-levels) and withdrawing funding for schools, colleges and training providers for other qualifications, such as BTECs and UAL (University of the Arts London) diplomas. The consultation seeks views on whether that proposal should go ahead.

We support the intention to simplify the range of available qualifications and also the principles of T-levels. However, we echo employers’ concerns about their practical implementation, in particular the requirement for at least 45 days of work placement. We worry that, given the general location of the screen industries, this will not be possible across the whole country and therefore some students would effectively be excluded from this route.

This concern is compounded by the proposed withdrawal of funding from other qualifications. There are some existing specialist qualifications, developed with strong employer input, which provide the best-established progression route for creative students onto high-quality degree courses or, in some cases, apprenticeships.  If funding is withdrawn for these qualifications, students will have no alternative pathway to university apart from A-levels, which are not appropriate for many students in creative and media subjects.

In any case, T-levels will not be available for all parts of the creative industries, meaning other qualifications need continued funding to maintain the development of vocational skills and knowledge for these sectors. There will be one T-level available in our sector, for media, broadcast and production, from autumn 2022.

For all these reasons, our response to the consultation argues for the continuation of funding for such courses. 

You can see the full response here

The link to the government’s consultation document is here


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