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GOC position on proposed apprenticeship standard

11 Dec 2019

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We understand that there are widespread concerns about the development of an optometry apprenticeship standard and we would like to explain our role and how this relates to that of the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education and the Trailblazer Group involved in developing the proposed standard.

We are responsible for protecting the public by setting the standards for all optometry programmes in the UK and for approving and quality assuring these programmes. The role of the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education in assessing the proposed optometry apprenticeship standard does not supersede this role.

The Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education has made clear that it would not approve the proposed optometry apprenticeship standard without receiving assurance that it is consistent with our requirements. The proposed standard is currently subject to consultation and we have not yet been asked to decide whether it would be consistent with our requirements.

Any programme of education and training designed to meet the optometry apprenticeship standard would require our approval in the usual way for students undertaking the programme to be able to join our register and practise as an optometrist.

Through our involvement with the Trailblazer Group involved in developing the proposed optometry apprenticeship standard, we have ensured that the Group is aware that the standard must be consistent with our requirements and that any programme of education and training designed to meet the standard would then require our approval.

We hope that this clarifies our role and provides assurance that any new programmes designed to meet the proposed optometry apprenticeship standard would be subject to the same scrutiny as any other new route to registration.

 

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