Highfield joins Care Learning Coalition

Care Learning CoalitionHighfield has become part of the Care Learning Coalition (CLC), a new initiative by Skills for Care to raise the standards of training in the health and social care sector.

Developed as a network for learning and development providers who are committed to raising the quality of training, the CLC brings together Skills for Care’s endorsed providers and provides them with a certificate and logo to demonstrate their support.

The Endorsement Framework is a mark of quality that is given to the best learning and development in the adult social care sector. 

Highfield became an endorsed provider with Skills for Care for its innovative e-learning package to support learners and employers undertaking the Care Certificate, receiving the prestigious Approved e-Programme accolade being awarded Recognised e-Provider status.

The Care Certificate workbook was developed by Highfield in 2015 on behalf of the Partnership, made up of Health Education England, Skills for Care and Skills for Health. Highfield elearning’s resource was developed independently of the Partnership, but mirrors the content of the workbook and was created by the same team of health and social care sector experts.

To find out more on the CLC, go to http://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Learning-development/Endorsement-framework/Endorsement-framework.aspx

Training funding available for adult social care employers

Training fundingTraining funding is available to put towards the costs of local authority employees completing the Level 5 Certificate in Fundamental Knowledge in Commissioning for Wellbeing (RQF). 

The funding is being made available from the Workforce Development Fund (WDF), and is designed to help cover the costs of local authority employees completing adult social care qualifications, units and learning programmes. 

Employers can claim back a contribution towards the costs of employees completing the relevant qualifications, units, apprenticeships and learning programmes. Employers who directly incur costs for learning and development, such as course fees, can access the WDF to reclaim a contribution towards these costs.

Employees must have job roles that primarily undertake direct commissioning of adult social care services.

A list of the funded qualifications is available here

The WDF is disbursed by Skills for Care (SfC), and is available until 29 September 2017. 

If you are a learning providerlarge national organisation (1000+ employees) or an employer led partnership, please visit the appropriate page for more information and to apply. 

You can also read more about how the WDF has helped others.

To apply
There are different ways to access the training funding depending on your location:

 To find out how Highfield Assessment compares to its competitors, please visit here.


All hands on deck for VICTA

Doncaster Dragon Boat ChallengeIt was all hands on deck this July as the intrepid Highfield team took to the water for the annual Doncaster Dragon Boat Challenge to raise money for VICTA

Held for the eighth consecutive year on Saturday 15 July 2017 at Doncaster Lakeside, the event saw Highfield’s hardy sea salts racing their ornately decorated 30-foot Chinese dragon boat against other teams from across the region – also raising money for charity – for the coveted title of Dragon Boat Champions.

Each team consisted of 10 rowers and a drummer of mixed ages and abilities, who raced over a 250 metre course three times.  Last year the teams raised an impressive £15,000 for their chosen charities, with a similar amount expected this year once all donations are collected. 

In addition to the on-water action, spectators were also able to enjoy a range of attractions and entertainment including fun fair rides, craft and charity stalls, along with plenty of food and drink. 

Kirsty Mackell, Highfied’s charity coordinator, said, ‘We had a great day at the Doncaster Dragon Boat Challenge and raised £400 for VICTA so far, so it was a double success.

The dragon boat race has proven to be one of the highlights of our annual fundraising activities, and I’d really like to thank all the team who took part – staff members as well as friends and family – who all helped make the day happen.

I’d also like to give a special mention to those who didn’t venture out onto the lake but did an equally important job of running our stall and tombola stand with prizes donated by Highfield’s distribution centre, raising a magnificent £60′. 

VICTA works to provide equipment, services and events that help blind and visually impaired children and young people develop socially, emotionally and educationally, as well as offering their parents a vital network of support and information. It has been Highfield’s chosen charity since 2013, with around £35,000 raised to date.   

You can still donate to the team at https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/highfieldrockingtheboat


Autumn withdrawal for People 1st apprenticeship pathways

People 1stA number of apprenticeship pathways are to be withdrawn this autumn following a comprehensive review by People 1st.

The review was conducted over a three-week period by People 1st, the sector skills council responsible for sectors such as hospitality, leisure, passenger transport, travel, tourism and retail, and recommends that over 20 pathways (from within apprenticeship frameworks) be withdrawn.

As a result, a number of pathways will be withdrawn from 31 October 2017. 

A full list can be downloaded from the People 1st website.

To find out how we stack up against our competitors for end-point assessment, simply visit here.

Don’t miss out on the food safety event of the year!

food safety event of the yearWith less than two months to go until Highfield hosts the food safety event of the year at Doncaster Racecourse, we are pleased to announce that the conference agenda is now live!

Covering key topics across the sector, Food Fraud, Culture & Modern Catering Processes will provide delegates with the knowledge and understanding to improve existing food strategies and procedures within their businesses.


 09:00-09:45 Registration and Exhibition Viewing  
 09:45-10:00   Welcome & Chair

Richard Sprenger
Highfield Qualifications

 10:00-10:45   Delivering a Food Safety Culture

Sterling Crew

Institute of Food Science and Technology   

 10:45-11:15   Break and Exhibition Viewing  
 11:15-12:00   Taking the Risk Out of Allergen Risk Assessments   

Simon Flanagan


 12:00-12:45   Modern Catering Low-temperature Techniques

Dr Andy Bowles

ABC Food Law   

 12:45-13:45 Lunch and Exhibition Viewing  
 13:45-14:30 Challenges to the Integrity of the Global Food Supply System

Professor Chris Elliott

Queens University Belfast      

 14:30-15:15   Food Safety Offences & Sentencing (Food Crime Unit Update)

Andy Morling

Food Standards Agency

 15:15-16:00   Minimising Accidental Food Fraud

Peter Littleton


 16:00   Event Closes  

You’ll also get the chance to:

  • purchase Highfield training materials with an exclusive conference discount
  • view products and services from a host of exhibitors
  • network with colleagues from across the food sector
  • get authoritative guidance and advice from industry professionals

The conference takes place on Tuesday 26 September 2017 at Doncaster Racecourse.Tickets are priced at £170 + VAT for Highfield centres and £210 + VAT for non-centres.

To book a place for yourself and/or a colleague, you can book here. Alternatively, call us on 0845 226 0350/ 01302 363277 or email events@highfieldabc.com.

And one last thing, if you aren’t already a member of our Food Safety Forum on LinkedIn, join today for free to receive updates, news and information from food safety trainers, consultants, practitioners and indsutry professionals, alongside continuous networking opportunties and exclusive promotions.

2018 events calendar now live!

2018 events calendarWe know summer may have only just started, despite the best efforts of the British weather to suggest otherwise.  

And it’s still a massive 152 days until Christmas (sorry).  

But that’s not going to stop us from launching our events calendar for 2018!  

We’re already excited about the line up we’ve put together, with a whole host of events throughout the year covering first aid, fire safety, education and training and food safety.

And we’ve brought together some of the very best subject matter experts in their fields, who will be bringing you all the latest updates, guidance, information and training you need for your organisation. 

Nearly all our events come with CPD points and offer discounts to Highfield Centres, so there’s plenty of reason to get booking now. 

But don’t worry if you’re looking to have your training needs met a little bit sooner – there’s still 21 weeks of the year left (we’re counting) and numerous events between now and the end of the year, so plenty of opportunity to confirm your place.

If you want to take a sneak preview of what we’ve lined up for 2018, then just go to our events section and scroll through the dates. 

Or drop us a line at events@highfield.co.uk  

New qualification to help businesses better understand allergen rules

understand allergen rulesA new qualification that will help foodservice staff better understand allergen rules and employers comply with legislation has been launched.

The Highfield Level 2 Award in Food Allergen and Control in Catering (RQF) is aimed at anyone involved in food preparation and service within the catering, hospitality and licensing sectors, and will give employees knowledge relating to the control of ingredients and allergies at all stages of food purchase and production.

The qualification, from Highfield Qualifications – the largest provider of regulated food-safety qualifications in the UK – will also provide employees with an understanding of the process for ensuring that accurate ingredient information is available for customers at point of sale and service, while giving businesses confidence that they and their staff comply with the law. 

Legislation introduced in 2014 means that businesses need to provide allergy information on any food sold unpackaged, whether via a pub, restaurant, café, deli counter, bakery or sandwich shop.

However, figures released by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) at the end of 2016 show that the number of businesses receiving warnings for failure to comply with food standards in the year after the introduction of the legislation had leapt to over 23,000 from just under 15,000 – an increase of 59 percent – with many believing confusion around the new rules to be responsible and suggesting compliance has been an issue for some.

Chris Sprenger, Managing Director at Highfield Qualifications, said, ‘The figures from the FSA show that many businesses are needlessly putting themselves at risk of prosecution and reputational damage, perhaps permanently. Even without the legislation, the issue of allergens would still be important as around 8% of children and 4% of adults have a food allergy of some description.

The Highfield Level 2 Award in Food Allergen and Control in Catering, means that businesses –large or small – will be able to help their customers make informed choices and protect their welfare, while also helping them stay compliant with the law and safeguarding their reputation’.

The qualification can be completed in five hours, and costs just £8 per learner registration.

For more information on the qualification go to https://www.highfieldabc.com/qualifications/compliance/fam/L2FAC

For regular updates, go to https://twitter.com/askhighfield and https://www.facebook.com/askhighfield  

Help for healthcare employers on apprenticeship levy and assessment 

apprenticeship levyHealthcare employers looking to make the most of the new apprenticeship levy will have help on hand from one of the UK’s leading awarding organisations.

Highfield Qualifications has been approved by the government to provide end-point assessment (EPA) services for the new healthcare assistant practitioner, healthcare support worker and senior healthcare support worker standards – which are currently being introduced throughout the sector – and will be offering healthcare employers a full range of support services to make the most of their potential apprenticeship levy payments.

The changes are some of the biggest ever to training in the UK, and will see new apprenticeship standards use EPAs instead of continuous assessment, meaning individual apprentices will have their work and competence assessed towards the end of their learning against criteria established by healthcare employers.  

There has also been the introduction of the apprenticeship levy from May 2017, with larger employers paying into a central fund that must be used for apprenticeship training, while smaller employers will see 90 per cent of their costs covered by the government.

Chris Sprenger, Highfield MD, said, ‘With our recognition by the government as an apprentice assessment organisation (AAO), Highfield is in a position to provide specific assessment services for those organisations already taking on healthcare apprentices.

We can also offer consultancy and advice to any organisation still trying understand the changes and make the most of them –  whether they are looking to take on apprentices for the first time, wanting to have their existing in-house training recognised, or searching for services and resources to ensure they claim the full share of their funding entitlement’.

He added, ‘Apprenticeships are great for businesses and can provide a welcome boost to staff development and productivity when it is most needed, but it’s vital that organisations understand from day one how to make sure the changes are of benefit to them and their employees’. 

Highfield’s apprenticeship services are being offered through its Highfield Assessment brand. To see how Highfield Assessment stacks up to its competitors, simply visit here.

For more on the healthcare standards, go to the ‘Apprenticeship Qualifications’ section of www.highfieldassessment.com     

You can also contact Highfield at info@highfieldassessment.com or by calling 0845 2260350.

Regular social media updates are available at https://twitter.com/askhighfield and www.facebook.com/askhighfield

Notes to editors:

  1. Highfield Qualifications has been approved by the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) as an apprentice assessment organisation (AAO) for the provision of end-point assessment services for the healthcare assistant practitioner, healthcare support worker and senior healthcare support worker standards. Highfield’s apprenticeship services are delivered through its Highfield Assessment brand.
  2. Highfield Qualifications is one of the UK’s top five awarding organisations (AOs) and winner of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise 2016, offering over 250 qualifications covering a wide variety of industries including retail, health and social care, rail, food safety, security, catering and hospitality, and logistics.

UK food industry risks another horse meat scandal

Professor Chris Elliott, author of the Elliott Review into the 2013 horse meat scandal.

The UK is still at risk of another ‘horse gate’ scandal which may have been responsible for up to 50,000 horses disappearing from across Europe – that will be the warning from one of the country’s top experts at a major food industry conference later this year.

Professor Chris Elliott will tell delegates at the Food Fraud, Culture and Modern Catering Processes conference on 26 September 2017, at Doncaster Racecourse, that work still needs to be done to ensure food fraud is successfully tackled.

The conference is being organised by Highfield Qualifications, the UK’s leading awarding organisation for food safety qualifications. It was at Highfield’s previous conference in 2015 that Professor Elliott made the shocking revelation that up to 50,000 horses had ‘disappeared’ from Europe during the financial meltdown, which started in 2008.

The professor, who was appointed by the government to investigate the horsemeat scandal and food fraud in the UK, will explain that while progress has been made, food security has to remain a priority for authorities and the police or it will happen again.

Professor Elliott said, ‘A great deal of headway has been made since the publication of the Elliott Review into the Integrity and Assurance of Food Supply Networks. Plus, we’ve seen the establishment of the Food Standard Agency’s Food Crime Unit, which is beginning to have an impact.

However, food fraud must remain a priority – amongst many competing priorities for enforcement authorities – if we are to maintain that progress and ensure we see no recurrence of previous scandals’.

As well as food fraud, the conference – which is being hosted in partnership with The Society of Food Hygiene and Technology (SOFHT) – will focus on key topics across the food sector, providing delegates with knowledge and skills to improve existing food strategies and procedures within their business. Topics covered during the event will include allergens, food safety culture and the safety of low temperature catering processes.

As well as being chaired by Highfield Chairman Richard Sprenger, author of Hygiene for Management and The Food Safety Handbook, the event will feature presentations from:

Tickets for the conference cost £210 plus VAT, with discounts available for Highfield members.

For more information or to book your place, go to https://centres.highfieldabc.com/Events/Default.aspx

Alternatively, call 0845 226 0350 or email events@highfield.co.uk

For regular updates, go to https://twitter.com/askhighfield and www.facebook.com/askhighfield 



Looking for your next work challenge?  

Apprenticeships are changing, which means a whole new world of opportunities for employers, learners, training providers….and possibly you.

Highfield Assessment, part of the Highfield Group, is one of the UK’s leading apprentice assessment organisations (AAO), and we’re looking to create a team of high-quality team independent assessors to deliver end-point assessment to our growing portfolio of clients.

In most cases you don’t need to have worked as an assessor before of hold a qualification*. We’re far more interested in your current work experience and relevant knowledge. Plus, we’ll provide you with the training and a government-recognised qualification.

What we’re really looking for is individuals who are leaders in their field but want to make more of their experience. Knowledgeable managers, supervisors and team leaders who want to give something back to their industry. Capable and authoritative professionals who know their sector like nobody else.

In other words, experts.  

As a consultant independent assessor or consultant lead independent quality assurer (IQA) with Highfield Assessment, you’ll be going into some of the biggest and most well known organisations in the country to evaluate and assess their apprentices.

Sectors we need your expertise in include:

  • Retail
  • Healthcare
  • Customer service
  • Logistics and supply chain*
  • Hospitality
  • LGV driving
  • Banking and finance

We’re a flexible employer so you can work as a full-time or part-time employee, or even on a self-employed basis. And you can be office based or home based (though you’re quite welcome to pop into head office for a cup of tea now and then).

So if this sounds like your next challenge, go to our careers section to read the job descriptions for each specific assessor role https://www.highfieldabc.com/about-join-the-team

And if we’re not working in your sector yet, don’t worry, we soon will be. You can still send us your CV for future reference. Just email recruitment@highfield.co.uk

*Some previous assessor experience/or a qualification required