Coronavirus update for customers

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Coronavirus update for customers

Operational Update on NOCN Group Qualifications and Services

NOCN Group offers a wide range of services including regulated qualifications, EPA for apprenticeships, Job Cards in construction, Access to HE Diplomas, bespoke accreditation, and educational and skills support training.

As you will be aware the government imposed a third national lockdown from Tuesday 5th January 2021. You will find out more operational detail on the implications for each of these services through the following links:

Business Development
Regulated Qualifications
EPA for Apprenticeships
Job Cards in construction (CPCS)
One Awards

Please note that NOCN Group will be following the guidance issued by the ESFA, IfATE, Ofqual, CCEA Regulation, QAA, and Qualifications Wales, and will update our customers as things change.

If you have any concerns or would like to discuss the impact on your centre, apprentices or learners please contact us on or 0300 999 1177.

Further information:

Letter from Gavin Williamson CBE MP to Simon Lebus

Letter from Simon Lebus to Rt Hon Gavin Williamson CBE MP

DfE and Ofqual have launched two consultations (15th January):

GCSE, AS and A Level awarding in summer 2021

Alternative arrangements for the award of VTQs and other generals in 2021

Using Xbox to Access Online Learning

It is possible for learners to access their online work from home using a gaming console. For guidance on how to do this please download the document here.

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2021/2022 Grants Scheme and Additional Plant Related VQ Unit Grant Reinstatement

We can confirm that the 2021/2022 Grants Scheme will come into effect on Thursday 1 April 2021 and run until Thursday 31 March 2022.

CITB are moving to a more digital approach and as all Grants Scheme rates remain the same as in 2020/2021, we will not be sending a Grants Scheme mailing to employers this year.

Following discussions with industry, we have taken the decision to reinstate the Additional Plant Related VQ Unit Grant, withdrawn in September 2020 as part of our response to the impact of COVID-19. This means that from 1 April 2021:

  • Employers can apply for £600 for each full VQ achievement, up to a maximum of four achievements at each level per individual. Grant is only paid once for a full Plant Operations VQ per individual, but employers can apply for grant for other plant related VQs (such as Demolition) at levels 2, 3 and 4.
  • Within the maximum of four achievements at Level 2, an employer can apply for a maximum of three plant related VQ units per individual at £300 each.

Work to identify those with rejected applications from October to March will be undertaken to ensure no one is disadvantaged.

To apply for an Additional Plant Related VQ Unit grant for the period 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021 applications should be submitted by 30 June 2021. Instructions for how to apply will be available online from 1 April.

To find out more about available grants and how to apply visit our Grants and Funding page.