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Information for Staff

                     Latest Information from Care First

             

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As a reminder before the half term holiday, we’re resending the Safeguarding contact information which was last sent to all staff on 30 April. There is also some new Prevent information recently received from South Wales Police.
 
Safeguarding – concerns for the safety of learners:
 
  • All staff have been asked to set up My Concern accounts, please continue to log your safeguarding concerns as you normally would
 
 
  • The designated safeguarding leads (DSLs) are:
 
  • Sara Fowler – Strategic Safeguarding Lead
  • Judith Mulry – Operational Safeguarding Lead
  • Caroline Donaldson – Safeguarding & Wellbeing Administrator & DSL team
  • Lynne Lloyd – Head of Wellbeing & Learner Support Services & DSL team
  • Christian Phillips – I2A Coordinator & DSL team
  • Caryl Rowlands – I2A Wellbeing Support Officer & DSL team
 
If you have a Safeguarding concern out of office hours, emergency safeguarding contacts are as follows:
 
In a situation where there may be threat to life:
·         Ring for an ambulance and/or contact the police on 999
 
In a situation where you have concerns:
·         Ring 101 if you require police assistance in a non-emergency situation
·         If you think one of the college’s young people or an adult at risk (vulnerable adult) is being abused or mistreated or you have concerns about the wellbeing of a young person or vulnerable adult, you should call and speak to someone. Contact details:
 
Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council (MTCBC) Children & Adult Services
01685 725000
Open: 8.30am – 5.00pm (Monday to Thursday), 8.30am – 4.30pm (Friday)
Cwm Taf Morgannwg out of hours emergency duty team
(covering Merthyr Tydfil, RCT & Bridgend)
01443 743665
(5.00pm – 8.30am Monday to Thursday, 4.30pm – 8.30am Friday to Monday)
NSPCC website
 
NSPCC Helpline
Young people (under 18)
0808 800 5000 or email help@nspcc.org.uk
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

Other Cwm Taf Morgannwg Safeguarding numbers are:
 
  • Rhondda Cynon Taf (Children)- 01443 425006
  • Rhondda Cynon Taf (Adults) - 01443 425003
  • Bridgend (Children) - 01656 642320
  • Bridgend (Adults) - 01656 642477
 
We also have a number of learners from Brecon:
 
  • Powys (Front Door Children’s Services) - 01597 827666

 

lease note: All local authorities will have Children and Adult Services, if the young person lives in a neighbouring county borough, the local authority’s website will give you the office hours and emergency contact numbers.
 
Prevent - as part of our safeguarding duties:
 
South Wales Police and WECTU are informing that Prevent referrals have decreased since the lockdown. Despite this, the risk of radicalisation has increased for a small number of vulnerable people, as the pandemic means young people are spending more time online. This could exacerbate grievances which make people more vulnerable to radicalisation - such as financial problems or social isolation.
 
Radicalisers will always look for opportunities in support of their ideology, and Covid-19 is no exception. The global pandemic will likely create an environment where a small number of vulnerable people are more likely to be drawn towards radicalised activity.
 
Should you identify anyone who may be vulnerable to radicalisation or displaying signs of extremism then please do not hesitate to contact the college’s Safeguarding team, via My Concern or safeguarding@merthyr.ac.uk, who will make the appropriate referrals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Qualifications Update for staff as at Monday 27th April 2020

The attached document provides an overview of key advice and guidance on the awarding of qualifications for Summer 2020 and the level of engagement you should be maintaining with your learners. Please note that this advice is changing on a frequent basis and we will endeavour to keep you updated as further advice and guidance is developed and published. Please also note that we are still awaiting information on some qualifications, particularly one year practically based vocational qualifications e.g. Hair and Beauty, Construction.  We will update this guidance to reflect any information on these qualifications as and when any new information is released.  In the meantime, please can all Heads of Division check awarding body websites for regular updates, particularly where there may be practical assessments that have not been completed.

We will also be issuing advice and guidance to all learners and parents (as per the learner advice and guidance column in the attached document) so that they know what to expect over the coming weeks and months

 

 

Qualification / programme

Advice for learners

Advice for staff

Date updated

AS

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of the AS syllabus as well as start dipping into the A2 syllabus. There will be a calculated result for your AS based on a range of evidence such as previous GCSE attainment, course work, mock exams etc.

 

Any work you complete now will not inform your final grade for your AS, but will prepare you for your A2 or further study.

 

You will have the opportunity to sit your AS in Summer 2021 if you wish to.

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development.

 

From late May you can begin introducing some A2 concepts and work.

22.4.20

A2

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of the A2 syllabus as well as starting to focus on study skills and work that will be of help to you for future study. There will be a calculated result for your A2 based on a range of evidence such as previous GCSE / AS attainment, course work, mock exams etc.

Any work you complete now will not inform your final grade for your A2, but will prepare you for future study.

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development in anticipation of future study.

 

Some learners might not engage, but we have a duty of care to support them until the end of the academic year. Some learners are very keen to continue developing and engaging with learning.

 

If the A2 content has been covered and revision materials have been provided then you can begin to introduce some more generic study skills work that will contribute to the learner’s preparation for Level 4 learning.

22.4.20

GCSE Maths or English

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of the GCSE syllabus. There will be a calculated result for your GCSE based on a range of evidence such as your previous GCSE result, course work, mock exams etc.

 

Any work you complete now will not inform your final grade for your GCSE, but will prepare you for future study.

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development.

 

22.4.20

Essential Skills

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of the ESW syllabus, as well as setting work to support your result for this qualification. There will be a calculated result for your Essential Skill based on a range of evidence such as  course work, tests etc.

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development and to provide evidence to support qualification claim.

 

The controlled task evidence will be particularly useful here even if the work has been completed at home and not under controlled conditions.

 

22.4.20

Access

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of the Access syllabus as well as starting to focus on study skills and work that will be of help to you for future study. There will be a calculated result for your Access Diploma based on a range of evidence such as course work, assignments  etc.

 

Any work you complete now will not inform your final grade for your Access course, but will prepare you for future study.

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development in anticipation of future study.

 

Some learners might not engage, but we have a duty of care to support them until the end of the academic year. Some learners are very keen to continue developing and engaging with learning.

22.4.20

Year 1 of general vocational qualifications, e.g.:

 

Pearson (BTEC) Year 1

UAL Year 1

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of your course in preparation for you moving onto Year 2 in September.

 

Each vocational pathway is being reviewed separately by the relevant Awarding Body. We will contact you individually when we have further detail.

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development.

 

All work should be marked, IV’d /moderated as per Awarding Body guidelines.

 

Once all of the content has been covered you can begin to provide some research tasks and preparatory material from Year 2 units.

 

Staff should check awarding body websites for regular updates, particularly where there may be practical assessments that have not been completed eg. Sport, Public Services, Computing, Performing Arts etc

 

25.4.20

Year 2 of general vocational qualifications , e.g.:

 

Pearson (BTEC )Year 2

UAL Year 2

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of your course as well as starting to focus on study skills and work that will be of help to you for future study.

 

Each vocational pathway is being reviewed separately by the relevant Awarding Body. We will contact you individually when we have further detail.

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development in anticipation of future study.

 

Some learners might not engage, but we have a duty of care to support them until the end of the academic year. Some learners are very keen to continue developing and engaging with learning.

 

Staff should check awarding body websites for regular updates, particularly where there may be practical assessments that have not been completed e.g. Sport, Public Services, Computing, Performing Arts etc

 

25.4.20

Welsh Baccalaureate Year 1

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of your course in preparation for you moving onto Year 2 in September.

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development.

 

The majority of colleges are starting their learners off on the individual project. We would ask you to do the same to reduce workload next year.

 

22.4.20

Welsh Baccalaureate Year 2

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of the WBQ syllabus as well as starting to focus on study skills and work that will be of help to you for future study. There will be a calculated result for your WBQ based on a range of evidence such as previous challenge results.

 

Any work you complete now will not inform your final grade for your WBQ, but will prepare you for future study.

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development in anticipation of future study.

 

Some learners might not engage, but we have a duty of care to support them until the end of the academic year. Some learners are very keen to continue developing and engaging with learning.

22.4.20

1 year practical based qualifications.

 

These include many of the following:

 

IMI (Motor Vehicle)

VCTC (Hair and Beauty)

City and Guilds (Care, Childcare, Construction)

AAT

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of your course in preparation for you either progressing onto further study or into employment.

 

 

We are currently waiting for clarification as to how any outstanding assessments will be conducted.

 

We will contact you individually when we have full details.

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development.

 

Keep your learners engaged and ready to complete outstanding assessments as soon as we are able.

 

Once we have further clarification from your Awarding Body we will contact you with future arrangements however staff should check awarding body websites for regular updates, particularly with regard to practical assessments that have not been completed.

22.4.20

Higher Education courses

 

Year 1 of a 2 year programme.

Year 2 of a 3 year programme.

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of your course in preparation for you moving onto Year 2 or 3 in September.

 

 

Where possible, we are trying to keep learning and assessment as close to normal as possible but there may be minor deadline changes or alternative assessments as needed.  

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development as per course guidelines.

 

All work should be marked, IV’d /moderated as per university guidelines.

22.4.20

Higher Education courses.

 

Final year

Please continue to work with your tutors. They will be working with you remotely to cover the remaining content of your course.

 

Where possible, we are trying to keep learning and assessment as close to normal as possible but there may be minor deadline changes or alternative assessments as needed.  

 

Please continue to teach the remaining syllabus for your subject.

Set and mark work – provide feedback and feedforward to support knowledge and skill development as per course guidelines.

 

All work should be marked, IV’d /moderated as per university guidelines.

22.4.20

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Current position in awarding A level grades, vocational and GCSE qualifications, Summer 2020 - Update as at Monday 30th March 2020

As many of you may have seen over the weekend, Qualifications Wales have now published further guidance regarding the grade prediction for learners due to sit their exams and complete their courses this summer. I thought it would be helpful to provide you with an overview of the key highlights and important messages arising from this guidance as detailed below.

Our key aim is to ensure that all of our learners are treated fairly and have every opportunity to continue to complete and submit work over the next few weeks, whilst also being provided with accurate and consistent messages about the awarding of their final grades. With this in mind, if you receive any direct communication from individual awarding bodies, please can you let your Directorate Line-Manager and our Vice-Principal Academic know immediately prior to issuing any guidance directly to your learners. This will ensure that all learners are being given consistent messages in line with the following:

A2 learners (second year A level learners)

A2 outcomes will be based on grade predictions. These grades will be informed using a range of evidence. The date for submission of these predictions has not yet been set. This means that tutors need to continue to work with your learners to set new work, assignments and assessments that will help and enable them to improve their grade profile.

We will let you know as soon as the WJEC announces the deadline for grade predictions and the arrangements for submitting these.

AS learners (first year A level learners)

AS learners will still receive an AS grade, however it will be calculated using a range of evidence, including teacher assessed grades, and will not contribute to A level results in 2021. Again, please can all tutors continuing to work with your learners to set work and assessments as per their AS programme, ensuring that they have every opportunity to achieve the highest predicted grades as possible. 

Next year, AS learners will have two options for their A levels, they can choose to:

    • Either only sit their A2 units with the overall A level grade based on their performance in these A2 units
    • Sit both the AS and A2 units – they will be awarded the best grade from either route

We will work with you and your learners together with their parents/carers to discuss and determine which of the above options will be the best for them.

We are still awaiting further advice and guidance from the WJEC regarding the predicted grade profiles for learners who are completing AS/A2 in one year and we will come back to you as soon as we receive an update on this.

 

 

Vocational learners

 

If you are delivering a vocational qualification without exams, e.g. BTEC Public Services, please continue to work with your learners until all assignments have been completed as would be usual. Again, please work with your learners to ensure that they have every opportunity to submit work and achieve the highest outcomes they can. Please note that your internal verification needs to be as robust as possible, ensuring that you have sufficient evidence to underpin your predicted grade outcomes for each learner.

We are still awaiting further clarification and details around elements like the threshold to top up from a 90 credit to an Extended Dip – and whether that might be softened. We will update you as soon as we receive anything on this. Likewise, we are also waiting further information in relation to how Qualifications Wales is proposing to bring together/ ensure parity between different Award boards setting different predicted grade outcomes criteria e.g. Pearson Art and Design and UAL Art and Design.

 

Vocational qualifications with practical assessments

 

For those vocational qualifications with a compulsory practical assessment, to date, only CACHE have made a statement on how they propose to take forward assessment in placement.

We are still awaiting guidance regarding other qualifications e.g. Engineering, Construction, Hair and Beauty etc. At the moment, options being discussed, include:  

For progressing learners – accrediting what has been achieved and mop up outstanding practical assessment next year

For non-progressing learners – if practical, working with learners individually later in the academic year to assess them.

Both of these options raise could potentially cause some problems for colleges and we have worked together with other colleges in Wales to put in a collective request to Welsh Government for greater clarity.

In the meantime, where tasks are able to be completed at home, please can tutors continue to work with your learners to complete these over the next few weeks e,g, Hair and Beauty, learners are being encouraged to upload videos and pictures and samples of their practical work for tutors to mark. 

 

GCSE re-sit learners

The outcomes for GCSE English or maths learners will be based on grade predictions. Please can tutors continue to work with your learners to set new work, assignments and assessments that will help and enable them to achieve the best grade profile they can.

We will let you know as soon as the WJEC announces the deadline for grade predictions and the arrangements for submitting these.

Other qualifications and skills

We are still waiting confirmation on the approach being taken for Essential Skills and other qualifications and we will update you as soon as we can on this.

 

Moving Forwards

 

The key message arising from the above update is that it is vitally important that tutors continue to set work, encourage your learners to engage with their studies, complete assignments and work hard to achieve the best outcomes they can. There is still time to work with your learners to help them get the best predicted grades they can.

 

However, we also need to be mindful that we are not placing too much pressure on learners, who may be feeling a little bit overwhelmed and anxious with everything that is going on at the moment. This particularly applies to A level learners who may be receiving requests from multiple tutors with the deadlines all at the same time. Please can tutors therefore ensure that learners are not being given too many deadlines all at once and that work is spaced out as evenly as possible to help support learners’ workloads. Where you do have learners who may be struggling to cope or require any additional support at this time, please can you refer them to our dedicated learner support and well-being team who are working remotely to support learners in the best way they can.

 

Our ultimate aim is for all learners to achieve the best they can and I would like to thank you all so much for all of your hard work and efforts to date to continue teaching and supporting your learners remotely. I’m confident that by continuing to work together we can support them to engage in their remote studies as best as they can over the next few weeks and help them gain the best grade they can.

In the meantime, we will continue to keep you updated as and when we receive any news or further information from Qualifications Wales via email, via our social media channels and through our dedicated Website page at:

https://www.merthyr.ac.uk/content/coronavirus-covid-19-update

 

 

 

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