OATA offers discounts on training programmes


The Ornamental Aquatic Trade Association has announced it is lowering its fees for its City and Guilds training programmes until the end of June.

The trade body wants to help businesses during this challenging period by giving them the chance to offer training to their staff who might be furloughed at home.

OATA’s chief executive Dominic Whitmee explains: “We already offer a discount to OATA member businesses and this additional 20% drop in fees on full programmes will be available to all businesses until the end of June. Hopefully it will help businesses offer a way to motivate staff during this lockdown, particularly if they are furloughed at home, and improve their skills in readiness for their return to work.

“Advice from Government says furloughed staff should be encouraged to undertake training and this should not affect their eligibility to be paid while they do it, subject to certain conditions. And our programmes will help businesses comply with their pet shop/animal activities licensing requirements as well.”

The foundation and advanced training programmes can be studied at home. They are delivered online using a computer, tablet or smartphone via an eLearning platform, at a pace to suit the student.

Both courses consist of four modules covering water quality, filtration, fish biology and fish health. The Foundation Programme offers an excellent introduction to the key concepts of fish-keeping for beginners, while the advanced programme is a more detailed and comprehensive course for people with previous experience. Once completed successfully, students will have a City and Guilds accredited training programme certificate.