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Building T Level learner confidence in the classroom and the workplace  

Education and Childcare learners at Cardinal Newman College are building confidence and gaining essential workplace skills on the first year of the T Level programme.  

A learner at Cardinal Newman College, Hafsah Wadie, spoke to us about being one of the first learners on the Education and Childcare T Level, and how she has found completing a work placement in the midst of the pandemic. 

Eye-opening work placement experiences  

17-year-old Hafsah commented: “I’m really enjoying studying the new T Level in Education and Childcare. From a young age, I knew I wanted to work with children. Coming from a large extended family and constantly being around children inspired me to choose this career pathway. I haven’t decided on what specific area I would like to work in yet so it’s great that the T Level course allows me to keep my options open and gain experience in various areas. 

“One of the requirements of the qualification is to complete approximately 750 hours of work-related experience over the two-year course. My current placement is at a local primary school and it has been a real eye-opener as well as really hands-on, working with a variety of children with differing abilities. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it and I’m so glad I continued with it even though the pandemic is ongoing. From my short experience so far, I’ve worked on a one-to-one basis with a child to explain a topic, got my hands dirty by helping the children do some gardening, and observed several classes.  

“I’ve even helped out with IT and computer issues when the teachers started to use new methods of educating children during lockdown. The T Level placement has helped me to become more confident, working alongside the teacher and teaching assistant, as well as giving me an insight into a career in education and childcare.” 

The future of technical education  

Cardinal Newman College is one of the first providers to deliver the new T Level qualification in Education and Childcare, spearheading the future of technical education.  

Helen McGrady-Gore, T Level Quality Development Lead at Cardinal Newman College, said: “The T Level qualification is supporting our learners to develop the skills required to be occupationally confident and skilled to the relevant level, which provides a greater opportunity for future employability. Other NCFE qualifications that we offer have filled the gaps in learners’ sector knowledge and provided a holistic programme of study that has increased confidence and self-awareness in learners, as well as an opportunity to contribute positively to the local community by supporting the sector during such a challenging time.  

“Our cohort of learners are nurturing, caring and are developing the integral skills required to support children and young people’s wellbeing. They have a genuine interest in excelling their skills to create stimulating, enjoyable and challenging activities within their early years setting and in the classroom.  

“We would highly recommend the T Level in Education and Childcare to others, as it is a contemporary qualification which meets the demands of the sector, preparing learners with the knowledge and skills they need for the workplace.” 

To find out more about T Levels visit ncfe.org.uk/t-levels  

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