One of our disabled apprentices recently achieved their Functional Skills English qualification at Entry 3 and is on course to achieve the Level 1 qualification. At the same time she has an apprenticeship at a local garden centre and is working towards her qualification in customer care. There has been a noticeable increase in her confidence and this can only bode well for her future in the workplace.
This is a great success story and clearly shows what can be achieved with a little time, effort and commitment. However, despite our best efforts, working with partners to secure funding to develop the project we have been unsuccessful to date. We will not give up and we will continue to search for funding opportunities so that we can provide a service which we believe is crucial for enabling disabled people to enter employment and maintain their independence.
We were also instrumental in developing a guidance document to develop a guidance document entitled ‘Engaging individuals with learning difficulties and disabilities in workplace learning’, working closely with the Skills Funding Agency, Niace and the Institute for Employment Studies. The guidance is aimed at FE colleges, private and voluntary training providers and includes many ‘good practice’ examples.