COVID-19 Update

Last updated 12 April 2021

In light of the disruption being caused by the ongoing coronavirus situation, NET has the following advice for NET centres, training providers, employers and any candidates that may have an upcoming assessment booked.

2021 Lockdown – Centre Closures

Following the 2021 lockdown announcement, NET Centres will be applying Government guidance with respect to lockdown in England and respective guidance in Wales and Northern Ireland.

If a Centre closes they must contact all booked candidates / their training provider / their employer as applicable, informing them of the situation and that the assessment will be cancelled.

Where a centre is unable to fulfil an assessment on the agreed date, a full refund should be offered if the candidate wishes to rebook the assessment at another centre. If the candidate wishes to retain the booking with the original centre, the centre should work with the candidate to identify the earliest possible opportunity.

Centre closure list

All centres are currently open.

Attending Assessments

Where centres remain open, before attending an assessment, candidates should check with their centre to clarify any specific precautions or measures that may be in place for that particular venue.

Readiness for Assessment Checklists

At this time it can be increasingly difficult to get wet signatures (where a person physically marks a document) on a checklist, from candidate and or employer.

If employer /candidate signatures cannot be obtained, NET, in line with ESFA Guidance, will accept the following, attached to the checklist, in lieu of a wet signature during the current Covid-19 restrictions:

  • an email from the learner and/or employer’s email address with details of the confirmation and their typed name at the end of the message
  • a typed name on an electronic form or document emailed from the learner and/or employer
  • a signed scanned document attached to an email from the learner and/or employer
  • photo taken on a camera/digital medium of the signed document attached to an email from the learner and/or employer

NET day-to-day operations

NET staff will be working remotely during this period, however, the following support will still be available:

  • Emails to NET Info and NET Support will continue to be reviewed and responded to
  • The NET telephone line will continue to operate during normal working hours.
  • The NET online booking management system for centres will be operating as normal.
  • AM2 and End Point Assessment Certificates will be printed and issued once a week, providing the postal service continues to run as normal.
  • For apprenticeship completion certificates under AM2S and FESS, NET will continue to make applications to the ESFA as per our current process, but this service may be affected by any ESFA action which is beyond our control.

Cancellations by Candidates

If a candidate needs to cancel an assessment due to self-isolation, NET centres are expected to waive cancellation charges and work with the candidate to rebook the assessment at an appropriate time.

Re-Booking Assessments

This is an ongoing situation which is likely to cause disruption for some time. NET will operate in compliance with guidance from IFATE, ESFA and Department for Education and is actively exploring options to maximise assessment capacity over the coming months.