SINGAPORE: Kaplan Professional will be suspended as an approved training organisation under the Singapore Workforce Skills Qualifications (WSQ) due to "serious lapses", said SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) in a media release on Tuesday (Jun 11).
The suspension covers a period of 12 months from Jul 1.
During this period, it will not get funding from SSG for all WSQ courses. SSG is the agency that coordinates and implements the national SkillsFuture movement that provides Singaporeans with opportunities for training and lifelong learning.
SSG did not elaborate on the lapses by Kaplan Professional.
When asked, SSG said: "The outcome of SSG’s investigations and further audit checks indicated that Kaplan Professional’s conduct of WSQ assessments was not consistent with SSG’s guidelines for WSQ delivery."
In response to CNA's queries, Kaplan Singapore said it had conducted its own review after the SSG audit and found that several of its trainers had adopted assessment practices that were not in compliance with SSG's standards.
"We accept and will comply with the requirements of SSG in the matter," said Associate Professor Rhys Johnson, chief operating officer and provost of Kaplan Singapore.
"We are disappointed that such instances occurred despite a rigorous programme implemented over past months aimed at ensuring such non-compliance could not occur for WSQ courses," he added.
"We apologise sincerely for any inconvenience this may cause impacted learners."
In its media release, SSG said Kaplan Professional was previously suspended from delivering courses under the Leadership and People Management WSQ framework for six months in December 2018.
In March 2019, SSG conducted further investigations into its delivery of other WSQ courses and found "serious lapses" by the training provider.
"SSG takes a serious view of any individual, training provider or organisation which does not adhere to our guidelines for WSQ delivery, and will not hesitate to act against those who contravene our guidelines," said the agency.
"This is necessary to maintain the quality of WSQ courses."
WHAT SHOULD KAPLAN PROFESSIONAL'S STUDENTS DO?
Kaplan Professional currently offers WSQ programmes like workplace skills, as well as business and financial management.
Those enrolled in courses that are scheduled to start after Jun 30 can contact Kaplan Professional for alternative arrangements.
"Kaplan Professional is required to place them with other WSQ approved training organisations to minimise disruption in their learning," said SSG.
Kaplan Singapore added that they are putting in place a plan to facilitate any necessary transition arrangements and ensure that those affected will be able to continue their training.
It also said that the audit and withdrawal impacts only WSQ courses at Kaplan Professional.
"All other courses will operate as per normal ..." the private institution said.