Training providers should also close their doors from Friday, minister tells AELP

Independent training providers should close their doors from Friday afternoon until further notice like schools and colleges, the apprenticeships and skills minister has confirmed.

However, if a provider is going out to employers’ premises, if they are still allowed to, then this can continue alongside remote training and development.

Department for Education minister Gillian Keegan gave this guidance to Association of Employment and Learning Providers boss Mark Dawe yesterday as officials continue to make plans to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

A letter to his members, sent this morning, said: “Firstly, all our members were thanked by minister Keegan for what they were doing in such challenging times. In simple terms, if you have premises where people come for learning and training, they should be closed.

“However, if you are going out to employers’ premises, if you are still allowed to, then this can continue alongside remote training and development.

“Indeed, we were asked to encourage more online and remote learning. I have highlighted that, for many of our members who have excellent systems and resources, this could be expanded significantly but they don’t have access to the funding.

“While there were no promises at this stage, it was logged.”

Education secretary Gavin Williamson told the House of Commons yesterday that most schools and colleges would close and move to online learning indefinitely from Friday afternoon.

They will only stay open to children of key workers and those who are “most vulnerable”, including those with social workers and education, health and care plans.

This year’s summer exam series, including A-levels and SATs tests, will also not go ahead, he announced.

The AELP is pressing the DfE for answers on what this means for apprenticeships and end-point assessments.