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The Expert Advisory Group (EAG) report on the Market Review of ITT, together with the consultation documentation, has been published today.

Please also see our initial statement in response to the report here.

It is a lengthy report with much to digest and we would urge you to share widely and encourage your partners to respond to the consultation.  What is proposed represents the biggest changes to the ITT sector since 2010 and, if not carefully considered and implemented, may represent an existential threat to our sector.

There is much in the report that, whilst logistically challenging, we would be happy to support providing sufficient time and resource is dedicated to building the additional capacity in providers and schools that would be required to ensure it is designed and delivered effectively.  However, the implication throughout the report that these quality measures can only be met by providers operating ‘at scale’ is, in our opinion, fundamentally flawed.  Whilst ‘scale’ is not explicitly set out in the documentation, it is our gravest concern that the recommendations in the report seek to design systems which would see significant numbers of school-based providers lose their accreditation and instead be asked to act as delivery partners to larger institutions who will have control over curriculum design and delivery.  We feel this is a reversal of the last ten years of government policy and a threat to provision which is genuinely designed and led by schools to meet the needs and context of their localities.

We are also fundamentally opposed to the proposal that all accredited providers must undergo a reaccreditation process.  There is no credible evidence within the report to suggest that the existing providers in the system are unable to deliver the quality requirements called for.  We do recognise that some aspects of the quality requirements may be challenging, but are confident that collaborative approaches to meet them can be undertaken without the need to remove accreditation from SCITTs and small HEIs who serve vital roles within the sector.  The speed at which reaccreditation is required will result in a costly, untested, enormously disruptive period which poses an enormous risk to the availability of provision and, therefore, to the supply of teachers into our schools.

We will, very shortly, publish our full response to the consultation, along with a letter to Gavin Williamson expressing our concerns about these recommendations.  As ever, we are here to support the sector and will continue to advocate on your behalf on every platform available to us.

The response to this consultation could not be more important to our collective futures.  The timing of its publication, just before the summer holiday after an exhausting year, is in itself inexcusable.  However, it is vital that we make one last push to express our thoughts on the recommendations made in the report and we would make a plea to share the document far and wide and make as explicit as possible to your partners the importance of giving it some time and attention.

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