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28 May 2019

Print Trailblazer receives approval

Print Trailblazer receives approval

The print industry has its first new Print Standard for Apprenticeships.

Having begun in March 2015 the Print Technician Standard Level 3 programme has received full and final approval from the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE). The IfATE is the department given the responsibility for development, approval and review of all new Trailblazer standards by government.

The consortium has been led by the Chair James Buffoni of Ryedale Group, Vice Chair Ian Wilton of CDS and is made up of representatives from BCQ Group, BPIF, CDi, CDS, De La Rue, GQA, Learn2Print, Leeds City College, PageBros, Reach Plc, Ryedale Group, The Printing Charity, Unite the Union and Westrock - MPS, with the BPIF providing extensive organisation and administrative support throughout this project.

James Buffoni, Chair of the Consortium comments, "The Apprenticeship Trailblazer is a vital tool for the industry because it provides a clear standard for performance and progression as defined by a consortium of employers, and as part of the wider career development pathway in the print industry."

Ian Wilton, Vice Chair says, "Print has a long history of support for apprenticeships and it is great to see that through the collaboration of our industry these standards have been futureproofed."

With input from the industry, the standard was first defined, and secured agreement for the standard itself as a core of Print Technician, with the specialist options of Pre-press Technician, Press Technician and Post-press Technician. This approval was secured early in 2018. The last year has seen work undertaken on developing the assessment plan to support this new standard. With the support of the BPIF and the consortium, input from Training Providers and Awarding Bodies the assessment plan has now been approved by IfATE and also by Ofqual, as the External Quality Assurance body, along with allocation of the funding band.

The BPIF would like to thank everyone involved for their commitment to seeing this process through despite changing government parameters.

With this approval, Training Providers will now be able to develop the training programmes required to support this new standard. Assessment organisations will now need to seek approval to get onto the governments Register of Approved End Assessment Organisations for this standard.

Charles Jarrold, BPIF CEO commented, "This is great news, after what has been a protracted process. I especially want to thank all consortium members, and in particular James Buffoni, for all the time they have committed to ensure the new standard is designed by the industry, and Ursula Daly, who's been absolutely tireless in getting this over the line to such a high standard."

The BPIF would like to thank all of the consortium for the giving of their time and expertise to ensure that a high quality standard and assessment plan is there for our industry. A thank you also to the industry for their support and providing us with the evidence when the government stopped listening.

However this is only the first step, progress now needs to be made on our application for a Level 2 Trailblazer. Government have stated that all frameworks will be withdrawn by the 2020 to 2021 academic year.

For more information, or to get involved please contact Ursula Daly at [email protected]


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For more information please contact:
Ursula Daly
Ursula Daly
07921 259 254