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Open College Network West Midlands Centres: Lifetime learning for all

Merlin Training

Jackie Elston, Training Manager at Melin Training feels very proud of the trade skills opportunities that Open Collge Network West Midlands qualifications have enabled Merlin to deliver to a wide range of alternative provision learners aged 14-19.
“Open College Network West Midlands provided exceptional support from day one to help develop suitable courses for our learners and our dedicated Business Development Manager was on hand to offer free advice and guidance on course registrations, expansion of units and customised units in level 2 qualifications to ensure progression of our learners.  After everything was set up we then continued to receive continuous support through one to one meetings and regular telephone and email contact.”
Jackie Elston – Training Manager
Merlin Training is a small private training provider that has worked with alternative provision learners age 14 -16 and foundation learners 16-19.
Many learners referred to Merlin have had some form of learning or behaviour difficulty ranging from dyslexia, autism, asperger syndrome, ADHD, anxiety or depression, problems at school with attendance, disruptive behaviourand many other conditions.
Merlin Training have taken their students from a wide selection of trades and worked towards a wide range of qualifications from Certificates of Competence through to Diplomas at Level 2.  These have been real qualifications recognised in the workplace.
Merlin Training offered the Open College Network West Midlands Level 1 Diploma in Progression with learners progressing on to the Open College Network West Midlands Level 2 Diploma in Work Preparation for Building and Construction, where working in partnership with Open College Network West Midlands they helped to develop some of the building and construction units.  This qualification comprised a large selection of unit choices ranging from health and safety, plastering, carpentry, brickwork, plumbing, electrics, wallpapering, painting and decorating and roofing.   A key feature of these particular qualifications was the highly flexible ‘mix and match’ approach on offer in terms of large unit selection available, effectively enabling the qualification to be tailored in a bespoke way to a range of trade/sector specialisms and likewise in respect of the employability skill focus required.
Their courses were customised to appeal to Years 10 and 11, who would benefit from the unique combination of vocational training, personal and social development and functional skills education available through Open College Network West MIdlands.  The courses were aimed at those learners with irregular or non-attendance at school, providing all of the key elements of education and training and the firmest of foundations for their future.
“Open College Network West Midlands qualifications have benefitted our learners massively and given them the recognised qualifications and experience in both construction and employability skills. These qualifications will show future employers what they have to offer and we have seen many of our learners grow in confidence, giving them aspirations to progress and gain employment or moved to further training at college.”
Jackie Elston – Training Manager
However, the main reason Merlin delivered Open College Network West Midlands qualifications is because they have always provided unrivalled flexibility in learning outcomes and assessment criteria for learners.
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