Are your policies and procedures up to date?
As a 1st4sport recognised centre, you are required to maintain current versions of the following policies and procedures via the ‘Documents’ tab within Athena, the 1st4sport web-based quality assurance system. They are also required to be effectively implemented by ensuring that they are communicated to all your staff, learners and subcontractors and checks made to ensure that these are complied with.
The list of policies and procedures includes:
- health and safety policy
- equality and diversity policy (which must make reference to your access arrangement procedures)
- data protection policy
- child/vulnerable adult safeguarding policy
- quality assurance policy
- malpractice/maladministration policy
- complaints reporting and handling procedure (for the benefit of learners)
- appeals reporting and handling procedure (for the benefit of learners).
As confirmed in the 1st4sport Centre Recognition Conditions, these policies must be continuously reviewed and updated in line with relevant legislation. On this basis, all your policies are required to be up to date and must reflect any changes to legislation. Policy updates should be communicated to all relevant members of your workforce and implemented across all of your centre’s activity.
We are concerned that many centres that initially adopted and adapted the 1st4sport sample policies provided by 1st4sport Qualifications some years ago have not updated them as they have changed in response to changes in the Ofqual regulations.
As a result, we have now updated all the sample templates, which can be sourced from the ‘Documents’ section of Athena. We would encourage you to compare your current policies with the new templates to ensure you are compliant with our expectations. Should you wish to adopt any of the new templates, please ensure you customise them to your organisation by inserting your organisation’s name and logo at the top of the document, and add any other organisation-specific information in the relevant gaps. We do advise that you customise all policy content to make the information relevant to your organisation and learners.
Having adapted any of the revised templates, please then upload them to the ‘Documents’ section of Athena and either delete old versions or confirm that old versions are out of date.
Please ensure you communicate any changes to your workforce and any subcontractors. You may need to update the information you provide to learners to make sure they are aware of the relevant policies that affect them. Finally, you are encouraged to ensure that the adoption of any new policies is monitored and checks are made to ensure they are abided by.
Please note that, over the coming months, our external verifiers (EVs) will monitor the adoption of up-to-date policies and that associated procedures are up to date. Failure to maintain up-to-date policies may lead to sanctions being placed on centres.