NoSweat looks to 'restore relations' with NCTJ

Independent journalism training provider NoSweat is seeking to 'restore relations'with the National Council for the Training of Journalists after its appeal to qualifications watchdog Ofqual failed.

The NCTJ declined to renew NoSweat's accreditation last month and the college responded by appealing its decision to Ofqual.

This week the NCTJ issued a statement saying that Ofqual had decided not to review its decision because accreditation was an 'operational and not a regulatory matter".

'Ofqual confirmed it is not an appeals body and would not overturn a decision made by an awarding organisation,'the statement continued.

'The [Ofqual] response also went on to explain that [the] NCTJ had not breached any of its recognition conditions and therefore Ofqual was unable to intervene in this matter."

A spokesperson for Ofqual declined to add to the NCTJ statement, commenting only that the 'NCTJ have not breached any of our conditions of recognition and we would therefore not intervene in this matter".

The decision means that NoSweat no longer has accreditation to deliver NCTJ qualifications other than to complete the training for students on courses prior to 8 July 2011.

The NCTJ said it was organising outstanding exams for NoSweat students who have not yet completed courses that were previously NCTJ-accredited, as well as students on the magazine course which was refused accreditation in 2009.

The NCTJ is covering the cost of the exams and students do not need to pay exam fees for first sittings.

The NCTJ is no longer trading with NoSweat and the college has not yet applied to become an approved exam centre, a spokesperson for the NCTJ said.

New students can, however, sit NCTJ exams by booking for the national exams in November and April and sitting at another venue. This option is available to all students.

Commenting on the latest developments, NoSweat course director Steve Ward said: 'The issues with which we went to Ofqual must now, of necessity, have a line drawn under them.

'It is now imperative we work with the NCTJ to restore relations we have had for over a decade."

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