Important news for centres delivering qualifications in 2020-21

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It’s been a difficult time for centres and learners since we entered the COVID era. It’s caused huge disruption to delivering qualifications and getting people ready for their careers.

The world may still be in a state of flux, but the IMI is working to make sure the 2020-21 academic year is less stressful, adding flexibility to the way we work will help everyone to achieve their goals.

We’re moving from the Extraordinary Regulatory Framework (ERF), which allowed for a range of adaptations to make sure people could carry on with their studies, to the Extended Extraordinary Regulatory Framework (EERF) in England, Northern Ireland and Wales. The move should make all our lives simpler.

The new framework applies to all regulated qualifications that aren’t GCSEs, A-Levels or End-Point Assessments – there are some exceptions, MOTs for example – but in the main we’re going to embrace a digital approach where possible.

Under the EERF we expect to see the following as best practice, where delivery as normal (pre-COVID) is not possible:

  • Delivering classroom and theory elements remotely
  • Remote online invigilation for externally set and assessed exams
  • A move to remote rather than face-to-face assessments

The regulators learnt a great deal since March that’s helped the development of the EERF, and should mean a smoother experience for learners moving forward.

There is, however, an important date for learners still completing their qualifications under the ERF rules: where adaptations have already been agreed, including in-flight learners, all qualification and/or unit claims must be made by 31st October 2020 and no claims will be accepted after this date. Please bear this in mind.

We’ve put together a Delivering Vocational Qualifications 2020-21 webinar on how the EERF will change things, which will be uploaded on the website soon, so if you need more information all the answers should be there.

The COVID-19 hub hosts a range of other information, support and advice and is regularly updated, so is always worth looking at.

But, if you can’t find the information you’re looking for, please get in touch on +44 (0)1992 519025, or send emails to
With my very best wishes, do let me or my team know if you need any further help.