In autumn 2012 supported internships trials began at 15 colleges around England for young people between the ages of 16 and 24 who have complex learning difficulties or disabilities. The trials will test a study programme for supported internships that could be adopted by all further education colleges from September 2013.
A supported internship programme will provide a structured study programme, based at an employer, that is tailored to the individual needs of the young person and will equip them with the skills they need for the workplace. This will include on-the-job training, backed by expert job coaches to support interns and employers, and the chance to study for relevant qualifications – where appropriate.
The supported internships trial is part of the special education needs reforms as outlined in Support and Aspiration: A new approach to special educational needs and disability: Progress and Next Steps.
The 15 colleges taking part in the supported internships trial are:
Alongside the trials we are also carrying out an evaluation. The evaluation, combined with the increased flexibilities we are introducing to post-16 funding arrangements, will enable us to provide colleges across the country with a clear set of principles and good practice to draw from. All colleges will therefore be able to offer supported internships from September 2013 if they want to.
Summary of the key responses to the Support and Aspiration consultation.
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Information on the special educational needs and disability (SEND) green paper 'Support and aspiration: A new approach to special educational needs and disability'.
Information on post-16 work experience and enterprise education from September 2013.
Information about providing opportunities for 16- to 19-year-olds to move into higher education or skilled employment.