Inspectorate highlights shortcomings in care worker training at academy in Leytonstone

Care workers training at a Leytonstone academy have only “a limited understanding” of what they are learning, Ofsted has found.

Limm Skills Academy on Church Lane offers apprenticeships for adult care workers but is not properly checking their work or giving “useful feedback”, according to a report on May 12.

The report, following an inspection on March 24, also found some apprentices’ work had “considerable omissions” or seemed to be plagiarised from others on the course.

The academy also offers apprenticeships in business management but the majority of trainees during the inspection were training towards a level 3 qualification in adult care work, qualifying them to be “lead frontline staff” in nursing homes or elsewhere.

Walter Mugisha, from Limm Skills, said that the academy would work to improve on the areas of concern Ofsted had raised.

In her report, Ofsted inspector Gayle Saundry wrote: “Apprentices are not able to clearly explain the new knowledge they have gained… or the content of the most recent work they have submitted.

“Portfolios of apprentices’ work seen by inspectors were incomplete with considerable omissions. Tutors do not adequately verify that apprentices’ work is their own and much is identical in different portfolios.

“Leaders rely heavily on the information provided by assessors and employers about apprentices’ progress, and this information is not always accurate.

“As a result, leaders are not aware of the strengths and areas of weakness within their apprenticeship, nor do they have in place appropriate plans to make improvements.”

She added that assessors do not provide “useful feedback” that is specific to each apprentice or even “accurately track the attendance” of apprentices at training.

Overall, she deemed that the academy had made “insufficient progress” in all of the three areas she examined, including safeguarding.

An Ofsted spokesperson confirmed that providers who have made insufficient progress in safeguarding “normally receive one further monitoring visit” within four months.

As Limm Skills was deemed to have insufficient progress in all three areas examined, it should also receive a full inspection “within 6 to 12 months”.

Ofsted could not indicate how many care workers have received a level 3 or 5 care qualification from Limm Skills Academy prior to their inspection since it began offering them in 2019.

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Victoria Munro

Local Democracy Reporter