Learner Support Policy


To ensure that Learn Devon is an inclusive learning environment where learning, achievement and progression is possible for all our learners. The learning support service will provide initial and on-going support, access to resources and support for individual learners, specific to their needs. This will enable them to successfully participate in and complete their learning programmes, to the best of their ability and work towards narrowing the attainment gap between them and their peers.

This policy supports the aims and objectives of the Learn Devon Strategic Plan, the Learn Devon IAG Strategy and is in line with our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy.


Staff should:

  • Provide a learner support service involving initial and on-going Information, Advice & Guidance (IAG) and support for individual learners to make informed decisions, which enable them to engage in appropriate learning programmes, complete their intended learning outcomes and achieve personal goals & aspirations (e.g., accessing higher education).
  • Be aware of and supported in meeting the standard of information, advice and guidance required to meet the Matrix standard; Education Inspection Framework (OFSTED) and DCC customer service standard.
  • Provide impartial IAG and signpost individuals to wider guidance services, such as careers guidance and other education and training providers should they be better placed to meet their needs.
  • Have access to up-to-date information to support the delivery of an effective information and advice service together with information to enable signposting to further guidance.
  • Meet the criteria regarding support for learners within the Education Inspection Framework:
        • Create and regularly review an ambitious and inclusive curriculum designed to give all leaners the skills they need to succeed.
        • Have the same academic, technical or vocational ambitions for almost all learners.
        • Strive to create an environment that enables the learner to focus on learning – whether this is face or face or online. Staff should select resources which clearly support both the planned curriculum and learners’ knowledge and skills for successful learning.
        • The curriculum should extend to provide for learners’ broader development, enabling them to develop and discover their interests and talents.
        • Wellbeing should be incorporated into courses to encourage the development of resilience, confidence, and independent learning. The aim being to positively impact the physical and mental health of the learners.
        • At each stage of education, prepare learners for future success in their next steps by identifying clear progression routes, this forms part of their ILP and IAG action planning.
  • Ensure learners and potential learners receive timely, clear, accurate and up to date, accessible and impartial information before committing to a course so that learners are fully aware of the time and commitment needed to complete longer courses, and any prior knowledge or skills that are required .
  • Provide opportunities to discuss how a proposed course meets their needs, including access to initial assessments for English and Maths to inform individual learning plans.
  • Ensure learners are supported to achieve their learning goals, both in and between learning sessions and are aware they can request support at any point to help learners plan their future learning to support their personal and work aspirations.
  • Identify learners’ support and additional learning needs quickly and accurately through effective initial assessment or during the course, leading to the provision of high quality and effective support to help learners achieve.
  • Where learning support needs are identified, a Learning Support Co-ordinator (LSCO) will work with the learner to develop a bespoke Learning Support Action Plan highlighting and co-ordinating the use of identified resources and strategies. Plans are regularly monitored to ensure they are appropriate and of a high standard.
  • Tutors should be aware of, and plan for, individual learners’ diverse needs in teaching or training sessions and provide effective support, including making reasonable adjustments for learners who have additional needs and/or disabilities inclusive of, but not exclusive to SEN learners.
  • Identify actions leading to agreed learning goals, considering learners’ prior achievement and personal barriers to learning, which are reviewed and recorded accurately, enabling learners to participate in their journey and develop new skills and knowledge.
  • Provide relevant and detailed Individual Learning Plans (ILP), ensuring learning goals are well defined, SMART and agreed with the learner. ILPs should regularly be reviewed with the learner and feedback given on progress with clear next steps identified.
  • All staff should take steps to identify when learners are at risk of leaving a course and provide them with suitable support to re-engage or move to more suitable option.
  • Ensure that two Learn Devon staff are part of every class/session where a 16-19yr old learner is present.
  • Support vulnerable learners requiring support with other aspects of their lives that are impacting on their learning by listening, giving information, signposting, and making appropriate referrals.
  • Ensure that Learner Support is recognised as a whole service responsibility embracing initial contact with learners with any member of Learn Devon or MyDevon staff through telephone, face to face, leaflets, letters, brochures, social media, and web contact and then throughout their relationship with the service.
  • Promote a range of opportunities for learners to feedback on the service provided by Learn Devon and information about how Learn Devon has used their feedback to improve their situation or service delivery.
  • Ensure future progression is part of every course, where future learning has been identified but a course does not exist, staff should inform Area Co-ordinators so that they may set up and/or signpost to other providers as appropriate.

Learners should:

  • Be aware that Learning Support is put in place so that they may achieve their full potential.
  • Be confident that their personal information will be dealt with in accordance with our privacy policy.
  • Receive timely, clear, accurate and up to date, accessible and impartial information before committing to a course, and be fully aware of the time, commitment and prior knowledge required to complete courses before enrolment.
  • Take part in initial assessments to establish support needs and course suitability.
  • Commit to attending lessons and completing work to the best of their ability. Any concerns or difficulties should be communicated with Learn Devon staff who will be able to offer support and ways forward.
  • Be signposted to wider guidance services, such as careers guidance and other education and training providers, should Learn Devon be unable to meet their needs.
  • Be allocated a Learning Support Co-Ordinator (LSCO) to work with and act as a point of contact
  • Be supported to achieve their learning goals with easy to access information and advice about learning support, any financial help available and/or other local learning opportunities that might meet their needs.
  • Receive regular feedback and updates on progress and work with Learn Devon staff to complete action plans and identify next steps.
  • Where additional learning support is identified, work with the LSCO to create an individually tailored Learning Support Action Plan with clear agreed actions and goals. Additional support, resources and strategies for independent learning/specific skills may cover areas such as:
        • Provision of a Learning Support Assistant
        • Support/differentiation strategies agreed with Tutor and Learning Support Assistant
        • Time management and organisation
        • Note-taking and note-making techniques
        • Exam and revision strategies
        • Preparing for classes
        • Action planning and target setting
        • Research methods
        • Numeracy and literacy strategies
        • Use and incorporation of assistive technology
  • Be provided with a range of opportunities to feedback on the information, advice and guidance service provided by Learn Devon and are provided with information about how Learn Devon has used their feedback to improve their situation or service delivery.
  • Be given clear information about future learning and progression routes, including courses with external providers

Safeguarding and Prevent:

We recognise that safeguarding from harm and abuse is everyone’s responsibility. Learn Devon is committed to providing a safe and secure environment in which children, young people, vulnerable adults, and adults can learn, develop and succeed and where all aspects of their welfare will be protected. We have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism (Prevent Duty).

We believe it is unacceptable for anyone to experience abuse of any kind and recognise our responsibility to safeguarding by a commitment to practices which protect them and to following Devon County Council procedures. Our duty of care also extends to staff, and volunteers and we endeavour to ensure their wellbeing and health and safety are always a priority. Safeguarding and Prevent Duty Policy


Updated September 2023