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Associate Principal selected to help shape new T Level programme

We are delighted to announce that Emma Forrest-Leigh, Associate Principal for Digital and Creative Industries, has been selected to sit on a national panel helping to shape the new T Levels.

The Grimsby Institute was named earlier this year as one of the first 54 colleges in the country to teach T Levels, a two-year technical study programme for 16-19 year olds that include a qualification and industry placement.

Courses in construction, digital and education and childcare will be first taught from September 2020, as part of Education Secretary Damien Hinds’ vision for a ‘world-class technical education system’.

And the biggest shake-up of technical education in decades moved a step closer this week, as Emma joined fellow industry experts on the new employer-led panels, which will lead work on designing the content of the next set of T Levels.

An example of Emma’s work. Credit: Dean Stockings (photography) and Toyah Wilcox.

Creative practitioner Emma, who also runs a successful jewellery business, was selected on the strength of her experience of private industry, having worked for organisations including Topshop, Impulse Body Spray and Argos.

She has worked across the creative sector, notably producing a bus advertisement branding campaign for OXO, and has seen work published in the likes of Cosmopolitan and Vogue.

Represented by Design Gap and the Giftware Federation, Emma has a First Class (Hons) Degree in Applied Arts and a Masters in Critical Context, alongside a PGCE, QTLS and L8 management studies, and has taught for 20 years.

She has led two faculties from Grade 3 to Grade 1 and achieved the second highest results in the country in the last set of National Achievement Rates.

During her time at the Grimsby Institute, Emma has also set up the successful Estuary Student TV, contributed to Ofsted Outstanding and TEF Silver classifications and led a celebrated Erasmus+ exchange programme.

“I’m feeling very proud to have been selected to represent both my industry and the college,” she said.

“It is a privilege to say I’ll be working really constructively with the development of education for the betterment of our young people.

“I have always had a passion for education and firmly believe that those gaining T Levels will achieve skills and knowledge that will improve both their career prospects and employability.”

Julie Moore, Vice Principal Curriculum, said: “We are delighted that Emma has been selected  to sit on the T Levels Craft and Design development panel, alongside leading experts from the Creative and Design Industry.

“This is a fantastic endorsement of Emma’s knowledge, skills and industry experience and we are very proud of her involvement with this national project, in which she will influence the shape of new national qualifications.”

Welcoming the new panel members, Apprenticeships and Skills Minister Anne Milton also commented: “I am thrilled these talented industry experts have come on board to help make T Levels a success. They will play a key role in creating a world-class technical education system for our country.

“Introducing T Levels is a once in a generation moment. The direct experience of panel members will help to create gold-standard T Levels that give young people the skills that employers need.”