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Lawn Tennis Association Apprenticeship Enhancement & Exit and Progression Opportunities
Start date: Jun 1, 2015, End date: May 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

CONTEXT The Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) is the governing body for tennis in the UK with the primary aim of growing and sustaining the sport by increasing participation and giving opportunities for high performance players to develop. It is committed to lifting the performance and quality of tennis at senior level and one of the key ways that it seeks to achieve this is through the Advanced Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence (AASE) programme. AASE is a unique sporting vocational qualification for young people who have the realistic potential to achieve excellence in their sport by competing professionally or on the world stage. The programme combines a flexible education programme with a structured national training and development route across all sports, while preparing athletes for a career after sport. OBJECTIVES The primary aim of this project is to further enhance and improve the vocational training and development of Apprentices on the LTA AASE programme. This will be achieved via 3 overarching strategic objectives: 1) Facilitating the transfer of European training methods, development environments, techniques and philosophies into both the LTA AASE programme, the LTA AASE Apprentices and the wider UK Tennis practices. 2) Exposing LTA Apprentices to the European opportunities in both tennis and other careers so these can be explored and more readily understood, accepted and pursued in the future. 3) Embedding Lifelong Learning Principles into the training and development programme and working cultures in order to equip Apprentices with the aptitude and skills to pursue employment, either within sport or outside of it, throughout their career. NUMBER AND PROFILE OF PARTICIPANTS Participants will be selected from the circa 207 Apprentices that will form part of the LTA AASE programme in the 2015/2016 academic year, of which approximately 68% are male, 32% female and 23% from Black or Minority Ethnic groups. PROJECT ACTIVITIES The majority of the work placement activities will take place at the BTT facility, including: - Regular training sessions with BTT coaches to address the defined sports performance targets. - Games versus high quality Spanish youth players. - Daily feedback and evaluation sessions to confirm goal setting/reflection. Participants will also undertake a structured schedule of social/cultural activities, including: - A guided tour of Real Club de Tenis Barcelona (the oldest tennis club in Spain). - A visit to Barcelona. - Overnight stays with BTT players’ families, and other social events within the local community, providing unique social/cultural experiences and the opportunity to practice language skills. METHODOLGY The LTA will use the principles of the European Quality Charter for Mobility to set goals and define tasks for the key elements of the project: 1) INFORMATION AND GUIDANCE: production of clear and accessible resources. 2) LEARNING PLAN: clearly defining the project objectives and the role of each partner in achieving them. 3) PERSONALISATION: pre-visit assessment of participants' desired learning outcomes. 4) PREPARATION: a structured preparation programme tailored to individual needs. 5) LANGUAGE: provision of formal and informal language training. 6) LOGISTICS: a formal contract to be signed by both parties outlining practical and logistical responsibilities. 7) MENTORING: provision of suitably qualified staff to facilitate achievement of individual goals and ensure integration. 8) RECOGNITION: delivery of formal instruments to recognise individual learning outcomes. 9) EVALUATION: comprehensive and objective evaluation of all aspects of the project. 10) RESPONSIBILITIES: agreement by all parties on their roles and responsibilities in the successful delivery of the project, formalised in writing via a Memorandum of Understanding and individual participant Learning Plans. IMPACTS The impacts on participants are expected to include: - Achievement of recognised qualifications (e.g. BTEC L1 Work Skills). - Development of life skills and experience that can be utilised throughout participants' education and careers. - Enhanced cultural and linguistic skills, facilitating openness to new opportunities both in the UK and Europe. - Improved knowledge and understanding of the European opportunities in sport and other careers. The impacts on the LTA are expected to include: - Enhancement of the LTA AASE programme both in terms of improved technical sporting quality of Apprentices and coaches, and also Apprentice achievement rates. - Implementation of best practice across the LTA AASE programme and also the organisation's wider education activities. - Improved exit and progression opportunities for Apprentices, both within sport and outside of it, and in the UK and Europe.

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