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Aspiration Awards 2023: Centre of the Year – Learning Curve Group
The Centre of the Year category recognises providers that have gone over and above to help their learners. This year’s winner is Learning Curve Group, who impressed the judges with their dedication to their learners’ needs, ensuring that every learner receives equal opportunities and support to succeed in their studies.
Learning Curve Group is a national training and education specialist who works with further education providers, employers and learners to help them achieve success. They support over 200,000 learners each year, working with over 4,500 employers including local authorities, micro-businesses, and levy-paying organisations.
Education with no barriers
Learning Curve Group aims to fill the gaps within workforces, making sure learners acquire the knowledge, skills and qualifications necessary to succeed in the modern-day workplace. Brenda McLeish OBE DL, CEO, said: “We’re dedicated to providing individuals with high-quality training, so opportunities are available to people from all walks of life.
“Using Government funding set aside for education, we ensure those who need and want it most can access further training. We do this in several ways; apprenticeships, over 60 skills academies across England and Wales, flexible, online learning, Skills Bootcamps, Multiply, and community-led delivery.”
Learning Curve Group passionately believes that anybody who wishes to upskill or reskill should have the access to do so, no matter their age or background. Brenda explains: “We work hard to engage with underrepresented and disadvantaged communities ensuring all barriers which may discriminate against them are eradicated.
“We strive to remove barriers such as funding, childcare costs, and transport to ensure accessibility to all; regardless of their socio-economic status. We also implement initiatives to diversify our learner base, which, in 2022, resulted in us balancing our female to male apprentice ratio after identifying a lack of male representation.”
Learning Curve Group aims to be inclusive and accessible to all learners, including those with learning difficulties and disabilities, by utilising visual and interactive software such as Jamboard and Padlet which encourage confident collaboration and development of IT skills, through their engaging features. Learning is adapted to suit individuals and complex needs using a variety of platforms such as Aptem, Skills Forward, and Smart Assessor.
Continuous support and mentoring
Their delivery teams provide unlimited 1-2-1 time and operate outside of their regular working hours to accommodate learners’ extra-curricular demands such as childcare and employment responsibilities. They support learners in difficult situations, attending HR and wellbeing meetings; priding themselves as a provider they can turn to for help and providing additional revision sessions to align with their learners’ needs.
Continuous support and mentoring for learners are just as important to Learning Curve Group as end-point assessment (EPA). Their Internal Quality Assurance (IQA) teams offer unique support for trainers, providing drop-in sessions alongside consistent proximal support maintaining high quality.
Regular progress reviews are structured with stakeholders to ensure areas for improvement are identified and developed and they conduct ‘learner voice’ and apprenticeship focus groups where stakeholders suggest enhancements.
They also have a team dedicated to learners at risk of withdrawing. They identify the root cause and work with stakeholders to resolve. Where learners have been offered employment while on programme, they have fast-tracked where possible to ensure they’re not held back.
Learning Curve Group staff celebrate their Aspiration Award win
An award-winning provider
Learning Curve Group has won numerous awards and accolades for their education provision and their impact on learners and the wider community. Below are just a few examples of awards they’ve achieved since in the past couple of years:
- Training Provider of the Year – Multicultural Apprenticeship Awards 2021
- Training Provider of the Year - Multicultural Apprenticeship Awards 2022
- Best Purpose Driven People Community – IIP Awards 2022
- Societal Impact Award – EY Entrepreneur of the Year Awards 2022
- Centre of the Year – NCFE Aspiration Awards 2023!
Their CEO, Brenda McLeish, has also been awarded numerous accolades for her outstanding entrepreneurialism and commitment to the education industry, including her OBE in Her Majesty’s 2022 New Year’s Honours List.
She said: “I’m thrilled to have Learning Curve Group named NCFE’s Centre of the Year in this year’s Aspiration Awards. We work tremendously hard for our learners to ensure barriers to education are brought down, they receive an impeccable learner journey, and they have the opportunities to achieve what they desire to achieve.
"LCG has worked with NCFE for a number of years, developing courses that bring true value to our learners and it’s an honour to have that hard work recognised.”
Congratulations Learning Curve Group! To read more inspirational stories from this year's award winners and recipients, visit our Aspiration Awards 2023 page.
Centre of the Year 2023: Learning Curve Group
Our Apprentice of the Year winner is 16-year-old Christopher Ademola, an Adult Care Worker Level 2 apprentice studying through Salford City College, who is helping to improve the lives of those he cares for.
Our Against All Odds winner is Gabriella Fox, an inspiring individual who began studying her Level 2 Certificate in Creative Craft (Cookery) remotely through Technology Triumphs in January 2022.
Our Centre of the Year winner is Learning Curve Group, who impressed the judges with their dedication to their learners’ needs, ensuring that every learner receives equal opportunities.