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Advice please

Discussion in 'Further Education' started by stamy, Apr 20, 2012.

  1. In November of last year one of my students from a level 2 BTEC Sports left the college. As the personal tutor I filled in a withdrawal from and handed it to my line manager (who happens to be a family friend of the student).

    I have just discovered that the student was not withdrawn and is continuing their studies 'at home'.

    Many of the Assessment and grading criteria for the course require the completion of practical activities such as canoeing and hill-walking. I am certain that the student will not be able to provide evidence of participation in the activities and I am equally certain that an SRF will be completed for them to achieve qualification in June/July.

    So my question is, if an SRF is submitted for the qualification when the student clearly has not completed the requirements of the course, what would you do?
  2. welshskyline

    welshskyline New commenter

    Do you not have team meetings? Does the course team not discuss the progress of students at these meetings? Has nobody noticed that the student is not attending? You need to use quite normal course management procedures to try and tease out what has been happening with a view to making your manager accountable for his/her actions.
    Of course, it might be that the College has allowed the student to complete the programme outside of college, perhaps with private tutoring? Alternatively, there might be something dodgy going on.
    [I find it strange that you are bringing it up as an issue nearly 5 months later?]
    If you really do believe that fraudulent behviour is occuring you can use your College's "Whistleblowing" procedure.

  3. I'd let my line manager worry about it. That's what he/she's paid to do. You've done your bit by filling in the forms and handing them over.

  4. Thank you for the reply.
    I have spoken with the other members of the teaching team and as far as they are concerned the student was withdrawn in November.
    "[I find it strange that you are bringing it up as an issue nearly 5 months later?]"
    The student left and the withdrawal form was submitted 5 months ago. I discovered that the student is 'completing the course at home', this week.

    I am very confident that this is being done for the sake of retention and achievement, combined with a bit of nepotism.

    I will look into the College's whistleblowing procedure.

  5. welshskyline

    welshskyline New commenter

    Do you have MIS reports you can access which indicate how much funding is being generated by each learne?.It would be interesting to see if this student is still generating funding. If he is not generating Guided Learning Hours, then that is actually fraud.
    It may well be that your suspicions are correct - in your college, who usually signs off the SRFs?
  6. baitranger

    baitranger Senior commenter

    The question is: do you have evidence that you completed and handed in the withdrawal form?
    Could you not send an email to the person in question stating that although you completed a withdrawal form when you did, the student has not been withdrawn?

  7. baitranger

    baitranger Senior commenter

    Probably best to just leave it then.
    There should be office staff checking the registers and querying whether students with absences should be withdrawn.
  8. If registers do not show the student then MIS will have to resolve the paperwork.
    Anyone filling in a register incorrectly, deliberately, needs to remember it is a legal document!
    You have noticed it. If asked repeat you filled out the forms. Until then you probably can't do anything, and for your own prospects probably shouldn't.
    Sad, but sometimes you do have to look after number one!
  9. There is also the issue of BTEC Registration. The student should still be on the BTEC registration list and subject to the same scrutiny in the annual visits by Edexcel etc. The GLH per unit are more than a guideline these days and the student should still get their allocated teaching hours.
    Sounds like a can of worms and I would be suspicious but, as others have said, your responsibilities have been carried out and this cannot possibly fall on your shoulders. As a tip for the future, photocopy and file away (in a personal file) any withdrawal/transfer forms so that you have an insurance policy should anything like this happen again.
    I completely understand your concerns about the ethics of what's going on. I'm afraid that this sort of thing is going on more and more in FE lately. Don't know if it's desperation for the funding or just gross disorganisation!

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