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The importance of professional clerking has never been greater. Schools have been given increased freedoms and greater accountability and the government has recognised that the contribution professional clerking can make to effective governance of schools is very significant. Being accredited means you, and others, can be confident that the clerk is an effective practitioner. The Accreditation Programme is an evidenced based assessment against national competence standards and therefore provides assurance of operating as an effective professional practitioner. The programme is also developmental and fits well with other in-house training and briefing programmes.
The standards are built around the key elements of the clerk’s role including the potential additional responsibilities in Academy setting as follows:
Clerks are supported by a briefing, either face to face or via an e-learning module and receive telephone and e-mail support. Clerks compile a personal portfolio of evidence against the standards for assessment with the support of their assessor. Resources to support the programme are provided. The support and engagement of the Chair and Headteacher are essential to the process. The completed portfolio goes through initial assessment by the assessor and then internal and external moderation to ensure consistent, high standards are maintained. The award of accredited clerk, or accredited clerk with merit, is made to successful candidates.
You can consider three routes:
When people are learning a new skill, like driving, they undertake training to help them to develop the necessary skills and knowledge. When they reach a competent level they take a ‘test’ to prove that they are fully competent. Accreditation is an assessment process that enables clerks to undertake self-directed learning and to develop professional practice. That practice is evidenced through an assessed portfolio tested against national standards.
Yes! We helped to write the National Programme so the competence model is consistent across both. The training programme provides a certificate of participation in the training programme but not of competence as a clerk. In other words it is quite possible to participate in training and still not be competent at the end! The training programme can help to provide evidence, through the school based enquiries, of competence in the role so the two complement each other. Equally it is possible for a clerk to successfully complete the Accreditation Programme without undertaking the National Training Programme.
The TAC Programme has been running for over 14 years and is externally moderated by ISCG or Qualifi. To date more than 1,000 clerks have completed the programme across the country, either as an individual candidate via direct assessment or via their LA service or clerking service employer. There are currently 30 LA’s using this programme, working collaboratively to reduce costs and drive-up standards in clerking.
There are two accreditation routes to meet the needs of individual candidates or participating organisations:
An alternative approach to run part or all of the scheme under the partnership licence is extremely cost-effective.
We will work together with all partners to minimise costs to the lowest possible level by sharing training, moderation and briefing costs. This is a not for profit enterprise and the scheme simply seeks to cover its costs. There is a small annual contribution (licence fee – currently £350) which contributes to the maintenance of the materials and framework. The cost variables are the salary paid to assessors and the number of clerks going through the programme. It is therefore possible for organisations to manage their overheads effectively.
There are initial start up costs:
- small annual licence fee
- assessor training cost
- moderation cost
- certification fee per portfolio
Clerks who have completed the programme tell us they have:
Partners operating the programme under licence tell us: