This week’s blog comes from our colleague Louise Doyle – Director of Mesma and Senior Associates with SDN
One of the questions we often pose to employers and training providers is ‘what questions should you be asking of each AAO when you discuss end-point assessment (EPA) with them?’ Through our work with the AAOs themselves, we ask the question ‘what should employers and training providers be asking you?’
The good news is there is a great deal of consistency in the responses; even if, in an emerging landscape, the AAO isn’t always able to answer all of the questions. With many still being new to the register, we must expect that it will take time to have the detail we are sometimes looking to them to provide.
So, here are the questions you may want to ask each time (there are fifteen, but you may have more). It is worth stating that for a number of the AAOs, some of this information is freely available on their websites.
- How much will you charge for your service (is it volume dependent)?
- At what point will you expect to receive payment? For example, is there a registration process with a nominal fee attached?
- Can we see a copy of your service level agreement or contract?
- At what point do you require us to inform you that we have an apprentice who will need assessment?
- Are you able to guarantee a window or date for the end-point assessment and if so, how far in advance will this be confirmed? What happens if this agreed window isn’t met by either us or you?
- Of the assessment methods described in the assessment plan, what resources do you have available to help us support learners to prepare for EPA?
- What is the medium by which each assessment method will take place e.g. face to face / remotely?
- Will it be the same assessor for all elements of the EPA?
- What supporting documentation do you require and how do we get it to you, to progress the apprentice through the gateway?
- When will we know who the assessor is and what information about that individual will you provide me with? Does the employer have a choice of assessor based on suitability to the role specialism?
- Do you charge for re-sits? How much? What is the window from the point of initial failure when the re-sit will take place?
- In what format will the apprentice receive feedback about their performance on EPA, particularly where a re-sit is required? Who receives a copy of this?
- What is your complaints / appeals process?
- We have an apprentice with an additional learning need? How is this considered during EPA?
- Do you have any additional information about the end-point assessment, in addition to that which is available in the assessment plan, which helps us to prepare the apprentice for EPA?
Is there anything else you would add?
SDN and AELP are delivering the national DfE/ETF support programme to help organisations and assessors deliver end-point assessment. SDN has also supported many of the trailblazer employer groups to develop assessment plans and helped to establish some of the first AAOs to deliver end-point assessment.
SDN can offer briefings, advice and consultancy support to help you set up as an AAO and deliver end-point assessment. Come and have a chat with us