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In this Issue
Careerforce and COVID-19
Reform of Vocational Education (RoVE) update
Great mentoring is key to having great staff
Recognising the essential role of cleaners
Welcome to your Careerforce May update
Kia ora

Welcome to the May edition of Skills for Good.

I hope this finds you and your team well as you continue the fight against COVID-19.
The May edition of Skills for Good is a bumper edition!  We cover the Reform of Vocational Education, COVID-19 learning resources, Qualifications Review and much more.
In the last couple of weeks we have noticed an increase in the number of assessments being completed through Aka Toi. It is great to see people continue with their learning.

Please remember we are here to support you and your teams.  Please don’t hesitate to contact your local Careerforce Workplace Advisor or call us on 0800 277 486.

Ngā mihi nui

Andrew Saunders
General Manager, Employer Services

Careerforce and COVID-19
It is pleasing and reassuring that New Zealand has been so successful in moving down the alert levels, a sentiment that we're sure all those working across health and wellbeing will strongly agree with.

As an organisation, we were fortunate to have been able to seamlessly and effectively work remotely, and we have taken the decision for our offices to remain closed, and for all our staff to continue working remotely. This includes all field staff not engaging face to face with employers and trainees, but rather via digital means.

The Prime Minister is expected to provide a further update on Monday 25 May, and we will take this opportunity to again review our operational status, and ensure we continue to act in line with Government directives. We are also finalising a safety response plan that sets out the protocols for how we will operate at lower alert levels, both for our offices, and for how we can safely recommence face to face interactions with employers and trainees.
In the last issue of Skills for Good, we advised that a temporary hold had been put in place for trainee welcome packs and graduation certificates. We are pleased to confirm that this activity recommenced at level 3, including a full catch-up.
In the meantime, we can assure you that our staff are all working as normal, and are available to support our employers and trainees in any way we can.
Reform of Vocational Education (RoVE) Update
The creation of Workforce Development Councils (WDCs) is a key part of the overall RoVE reforms which are aimed at supporting the delivery of a stronger, more unified and sustainable vocational education system. Design and reference groups are now meeting, tasked with developing the high-level requirements and recommendations for the operational design of the WDCs.

Following on from an email we sent earlier in the week, the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) are now accepting expressions of interest in joining the interim establishment boards for the 6 new WDCs.

In last week’s budget, $230m of funding was set aside to support their establishment, assuming the skills leadership and standard setting function currently undertaken by ITOs. The establishment of these WDCs has also been fast-tracked, with a target date of October 2020, ahead of the original target of mid-2021. The transition timeframe for our ‘arranging workplace training’ function remains the same, and not expected to be completed until December 2022.

It is critical that these new WDCs are industry led, and we strongly encourage you to consider the TEC's selection criteria, and submitting an expression of interest. For more information, or to submit an expression of interest, go here.

Careerforce partners with Ministry of Health to develop COVID-19 learning resources
Careerforce has collaborated with the Ministry of Health to create five learning modules with useful advice on how to support family and whānau during the pandemic, and halt the spread of COVID-19.

“As we recognised the severity of COVID-19, and the impact that it would have not only on the health workforce, but on the general New Zealand public as well, we considered what we could do as an organisation to contribute. The development of specific and immediate learning resources, and making these freely available seemed the best option,” says Careerforce CEO, Jane Wenman.

Careerforce made an approach to the Ministry of Health to offer support in the form of such learning resources, that would support the rapid learning and upskilling of COVID-19 related skills and competencies. The Ministry responded enthusiastically.

The following five modules are now freely available for all to access on the Ministry of Health’s LearnOnline portal:  Feel free to share these resources with others.
 
Great mentoring is key to having great staff
From left to right: Sue Grover, Tracey Dimmock-Rump
Amberley Rest Home and Retirement Studios is set in a small rural community just north of Christchurch, with the 21-bed facility run by a dedicated team of 22 staff.

“It’s an absolute honour and a privilege to do what we do,” says owner/manager, Tracey Dimmock-Rump. “This rest home is built on love really. The staff love their jobs and it reflects on our residents.  Our residents are happier and healthier.”

Tracey bought the rest home in 2013, and learnt early on the value of training, and having skilled staff in her team.

“I wanted the best from my staff. I wanted my staff trained, competent, and I needed them to be the best that they could be,” says Tracey.

“Back in 2016, I said I’d pay for everybody to do their Level 3 [qualification] and most staff took up the offer. We also trained our on-site RN to be a Health and Wellbeing Careerforce Assessor to support them.

Senior Carer, Sue Grover has been at Amberley for three years. “I just saw something in Sue.  She just stood out for me and I thought she’s got leadership skills,” says Tracey.
Sue completed her New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing Level 3, followed by her Level 4 and Tracey suggested they look at a leadership/management programme to understand that facet of the business as well. 

Now Sue is well on her way to completing her New Zealand Diploma in Business (Level 5) Leadership and Management qualification with support from Careerforce.
 
Lockdown learning - online
It’s been great to see the number of trainees and assessors logging in to Aka Toi and getting on with their online learning and assessment. The numbers have not been adversely affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Activity has been strong during lockdown, with over 2,900 users logging in during the first week of May, a new high for Aka Toi for 2020!
Assessment Preview
We’ve been listening to user needs! With every new module released Careerforce now provides an assessment preview, aggregating all the assessment tasks into a summary document. This helps trainees, and their assessors, get a “heads up” about what’s expected in the assessment before getting started.

Win a morning tea worth $100 for your team
Simply complete three questions correctly to be in the draw to win. The quiz closes on
8 June 2020. To enter, follow the link below:

Congratulations to Vicki Mead at Laura Fergusson Trust in Canterbury who won a morning tea from the last issue! The Laura Fergusson Trust is a leading provider of long-term residential and short-term rehabilitation solutions.
Qualification Review update
As the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) appointed qualification developer for Health & Wellbeing qualifications, we are undergoing a major review of a number of qualifications. This is a requirement of the NZQA for all qualifications listed within the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF), but is also good practice to ensure they remain fit for purpose.

1. Qual Review Social and Community Services L4 – Preparing findings and recommendations
We are in the process of completing our analysis and recommendation. We will publish the findings and recommended changes, and then seek attestations of support from stakeholders.  
2. Qual Review Rehabilitation Support L4 – Preparing for NZQA submission
We have now gathered attestations in support of the revised qualification. NZQA has requested we submit the qualifications under Health and Wellbeing Level 4 as one suite, this includes Rehabilitation Support L4.

3. Qual Review Peer Support L4 – Reviewed qualification is now approved
The reviewed NZC in Health and Wellbeing (Peer Support) qualification is now listed on the New Zealand Qualification Framework (NZQF).

For more information: https://www.careerforce.org.nz/qualification-review/peer-support-level-4/

4. Qual Review Addiction Studies L6 –NZQA submission completed
The documents were submitted to NZQA on 28 April. We will update stakeholders once we hear back from NZQA.

5. Qual Review Primary Care Practice Assistance L4 – Consultation
A survey has been completed and consultation via video conference will be taking place soon.

6. Qual Review Public Health L5 – Preparing for NZQA submission
We have now gathered attestations in support of the revised qualification. The team is preparing to undergo internal quality assurance prior to NZQA submission.

7. Qual Review Skills for Living 1 – Consultation ongoing
We are continuing consultations with stakeholders. The consultation so far has indicated that there is a need for a second qualification for supported learners to be developed.

If you want to discuss any aspect of the qualification reviews, please email qualreview@careerforce.org.nz
Necessity driven innovation - the unexpected win for English Language Partners NZ
This month we profile an organisation that has been working with migrants and refugees for over twenty years.  English Language Partners have a range of programmes including working with employees who have English as their second language. 
Where workplace programmes are not suitable, they can link your employee with other support like their ESOL Home Tutor programmes, and class-based training in their 22 learning centres across the country.
Then along came Covid-19. So English Language Partners (ELP) went to work.  CEO, Nicola Sutton states, “The level of innovation by our teachers surpasses all expectation.  In the first week after lockdown started, over 500 of our learners were engaged in online classes and five weeks later this number had risen to 1,073.  There were 285 classes meeting regularly and over 28,500 hours of English lessons had been attended by learners.  ELP will look back on 2020 as the moment when a whole new way of delivering our services was birthed.”

ELP has a number of funding streams so has great flexibility around provision.  If you have staff who are struggling with workplace English and text-based training resources, contact ELP to see what they can offer.  Their programmes are FREE to the learner, but you may need to assist with some technology.  https://www.englishlanguage.org.nz/

'Read more' to see the full story.
Recognising the essential role and responsibility of cleaners
From left to right: Leeanne Clarke, Robyn Matthews
“We are responsible for everybody that walks in that door,” says Leeanne Clarke, one of the cleaning staff at Lyndale Care, an aged residential care facility in Masterton.
“We are here to keep everything clean, and keep everyone healthy.”

These words could not be any more true, especially in the COVID-19 environment that we’re presently in. Everywhere in the world, cleaners are finally being recognised for the essential role they play every day in fighting the spread of infection.

Lesley De Menech, Trainer at Lyndale Care is pleased that they have always invested in training both their cleaners and care staff. Over the years, they have supported their staff to complete nationally recognised qualifications with Industry Training Organisation, Careerforce.

She shares, “one of our staff came to me and said when we went into lockdown, ‘I’ve read my infection control guide again and it just all falls into place now’. They are aware of the importance of their role and why they must do the things they do.”

Now the cleaning team are especially bringing their training to the fore. Working as a team alongside the clinical staff, they are playing a critical role in keeping their residents and colleagues safe.

Robyn Matthews, Residential Services Manager, is proud of herself and her team for having done training that has placed them in such a strong position. For her, training on-the-job is the only way to go.

“Personally, I wouldn’t want to sit in the classroom. I’d rather do it the way I’ve done it here. It’s practical. Just learning as you’re going along,” Robyn shares.
Careerforce programme reviews
Careerforce is currently working on a number of Health and Wellbeing programme reviews including the current level 2 and 3 programmes. These reviews include making sure that the programmes continue to meet the needs of the sector, as well as reviewing the associated learning and assessment. If you are interested in providing input into these reviews, please contact Steve on Steve.Fisher@careerforce.org.nz

Careerforce is also developing a programme for the new Advanced Care and Support Level 4 qualification. This will include a significant amount of new learning and assessment, as well as a review of any relevant material from the previous Advanced Support programme. This programme is going from 70 to 120 credits. Keep an eye out for an opportunity to participate in our survey in the next few days to provide feedback. Or, if you are interested in providing direct input into this review, please contact Denise on Denise.Williams@careerforce.org.nz

Pay equity related enquiries
Careerforce will continue to respond to pay equity enquiries until further notice.

While no new qualifications are being accepted for equivalency assessment, care and support workers can still qualify for pay equity via their qualifications. Your employees can either review the qualifications assessed as equivalent (listed here on the Careerforce website), or complete the Health & Wellbeing Level 2, 3 and 4 qualifications via a provider of their choice. Please advise your staff of their options. We will continue to keep you up to date with any changes, or visit our website for details.

 
Popular links
Find out more about:
  • Careerforce Qualification Programmes >> More
  • Pay Equity Qualification Equivalencies >>More
  • Gateway and Vocational Pathways >>More
  • How to contact your local Careerforce Workplace Advisor >>More
 
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