Resources for GP Educators

Welcome to the GP Educators section of the website.

Here you will find some general information on training and HEE NW policies and guidance that are relevant to your role.

Regular meetings are held for Programme Directors and Primary Care Medical Educators. A residential conference is held each year, and also a day conference.

Dates are circulated via e-mail annually.


Lead Employer Contacts:

St Helens & Knowsley HRt

Educational Resources:

Please find attached a list of essential reading for GPSTs.


 Problems During Training

Trainees wishing to change a Placement on a Training Programme

The reason(s) for changing the placement must meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • a change in the rota and/or clinical experience which affects the delivery of training for general practice
  • duplication of clinical experience (this should be discussed and clarified at an early stage with the programme director)
  • breakdown of the relationship between trainee and consultant or GP educational supervisor

The proposal should not compromise the integrity of the established training programme.

The proposed change must be acceptable to the Trust and GP practices concerned. This includes the order in which the placements are undertaken. The change must not contravene equal opportunities legislation.

The proposal must be discussed with the programme director to check that the post meets the educational requirements of the individual.

If these requirements cannot be fulfilled, the programme must be completed as originally specified.


Trainees wishing to Transfer
Transferring Training to Another LETB

The application window is now closed. It will reopen later this year.

The National Inter Deanery Transfer (IDT) process has been established to support trainees who have had an unforeseen and significant change in their personal circumstances since the commencement of their current training programme which requires a move to a different region. The process is managed by the National IDT team (Health Education South London) on behalf of the Conference of Postgraduate Medical Deans (COPMeD), Health Education England (HEE), and all UK regions.

In order to provide a consistent, transparent and robust process for all trainees, the National IDT team will make all decisions on eligibility and allocations in accordance with the published guidelines and criteria. The guidelines and criteria can be found by visiting the National IDT webpages here:

Transferring within HENW (Intra LETB Transfer)

The HENW GP School Intra LETB Transfer (NWGPILT) process is set up to support GP Specialty trainees who are required to relocate because they have had an unforeseen, significant change in personal circumstances enabling consideration to be given to a transfer to another Programme within HENW.

Spaces available for transfer are very limited and are therefore only available to trainees with a demonstrable need. This need must be based on a significant unforeseen change in personal circumstances that have occurred since the current programme was accepted. The change must also require the trainee to relocate from their current address. 

The application window is now closed. It will reopen later this year.

Policy document  - Please click HERE to download.

Documents (for INTRA LETB Transfers only) -
Application Form
Supporting Document A
Supporting Document B
Supporting Document C
Supporting Document D

If you have any questions about this process please e-mail


Revalidation for GP Specialty Trainees

Doctors in training will revalidate every 5 years and at CCT. The GMC recognise that supervision of trainees is already to a high standard. Trainees will be asked to complete an enhanced form R each year which enables them to make a positive statement of fitness to practice. As part of revalidation, they also need to ensure that records are kept in the e-portfolio of any significant incidents or complaints the trainee may be involved in.

For more information see the section on revalidation on the website

Healthy English

 This resource has been developed to address the language and communication needs of international health and care staff and their colleagues working in the UK.

There is a range of activities and explanations to help you develop appropriate language and communication skills for the health and care context.

Healthy English Website - Click Here

Less Than Full Time Training

Trainees of any gender can apply for less than full-time training, but must have well founded reasons why full-time training is impractical.

There are two eligibility categories:

Category 1:  Those doctors in training with:-

  • A disability or ill health

  • Caring responsibilities for children up to and including the age of 16 (in line with "The Flexible Working (Amendment) Regulations 2009"

  • Caring responsibilities for other dependents (spouse, parents etc.)

Category 2:   Those doctors in training with:-

  • Unique opportunities for personal/professional development not necessarily medically related

For GP Specialty Trainees there are two different application processes for LTFTT.

 LTFTT in a Hospital Placement

On-line eligibility form

LTFTT in a GP placement (this includes ITPs and GP+ posts)

If you are applying to train less than full time in a GP based post (including GP+ and ITP posts), please complete the timetable template below in conjunction with your Programme Director, Educational Supervisor and GP Trainer and return to Helen Dykstra via e-mail (  Guidance on calculating hours and completing the timetable is also below.

Less Than Fulltime Training in a GP Post - Guidance

LTFT TImetable

Trainees that are applying for less than full time training are strongly advised to discuss their plans with their Training Programme Director at an early stage

In particular, all trainees who are in less than full time training should familiarise themselves with the minimum assessment requirements for each review period as they are not pro-rata to full time requirements. Summary guidelines can be found via the hyperlink below.

RCGP Guidelines for LTFTT

HENW criteria for LTFTT can be found Under the Policies & Procedures link on the Home page of this website

HENW Criteria for LTFTT

All queries regarding LTFTT in a GP Programme should be directed to Helen Dykstra -


Out of Programme

There are a number of circumstances in which trainees may wish to take time out of their GP specialty training programme.  There may be educational benefits to trainees in doing this but it poses problems for the GP School and GPSTs in ensuring continuity of service and of training for all trainees. As a consequence, taking time out of programme is a privilege that can only be granted to a minority of trainees when clear need is demonstrated.

When considering OOP for whatever reason trainees should be aware that they need to apply at least 6 months in advance of the date they intend the OOP to commence.  This is applied very strictly and applications made within a shorter timescale will not be considered unless there are significant exceptional circumstances that cannot be met by other means. Supporting evidence will need to be submitted for all applications.

All applications for OOP should be discussed in advance with the Programme Director and lead employer where appropriate.

The Gold Guide outlines the circumstances under which trainees are able to apply for time out of programme

  • Approved clinical training (OOPT) – this is to spend time in a post outside HENW that has been prospectively approved by the GMC for GP specialty training. As GP training programmes are fixed 3 year programmes such a request represents a change of programme and is dealt with under that policy.
  • Additional clinical or related experience (OOPE) – this is to spend time gaining clinical experience in non approved posts in the UK or overseas. This time is not part of the formal 3 year programme leading to CCT.
  • Research (OOPR) – this is time to undertake research, normally for a higher registerable degree e.g. Masters Degree. This time is not part of the approved 3 year programme leading to CCT.
  • Career break (OOPC) – this is time out for personal reasons such as health problems, carer responsibilities or to pursue outside interests.

This policy does not include statutory leave such as maternity, paternity or parental leave, which are dealt with through the Lead Employer.

The Guidelines for OOP in a GPST post can be downloaded HERE

The national HEE Policy regarding the Step On Step Off Training Process should be read in conjunction with the OOP guidelines - click here.  An FAQ sheet is also provided - here

and the application form HERE

Any queries regarding the OOP process for GPSTs should be directed to

Undertaking Additional Work During Training

Trainees may undertake locum or other work outside of their employed training programme provided certain conditions are met.  Please see the Policy document for guidance and contact the GP School for clarification if required.

Policy Document  

Undertaking Additional Work During Training

Trainees may undertake locum or other work outside of their employed training programme provided certain conditions are met.  Please see the Policy document for guidance and contact the GP School for clarification if required.

Policy Document

Suspension of e-portfolio during maternity leave

Trainees are advised against suspending their RCGP e-portfolio during maternity leave. Please see the advice below 

When a trainee plans to go on maternity leave they should let their employer know (hospital trust or GP Practice) as well as their Educational Supervisor, local GP Training Patch Office and GP School team who can then advise on the various administrative steps that need to take place.

As soon as the Educational Supervisor is informed about a trainee’s proposed maternity leave, he/she should contact the trainee and arrange a date for an Educational Supervisor (ES) Review to be performed just before the leave commences. This review allows the ES to write a report on the trainee’s progress since the previous ES report up until the date of starting maternity leave.

Before starting Maternity leave the trainee must make sure that they continue to record their educational activity (assessments, learning log entries etc.) even though this might be the last thing on their mind. If the trainee is leaving for maternity leave after only a few months of, for example, a hospital post it is essential that the trainee does some assessments and records their learning even in these months.

The RCGP is very careful to make sure that all periods of time in GP Training counts for educational purposes as well as service provision. If there is no evidence of any learning i.e. no log entries and no assessments, the RCGP certification department may regard this time as having no educational value at all to the trainee and ask that the GP School give the trainee an extension to compensate for this lost time.

Prior to Maternity leave Learning Log and PDP entries should be recorded at the usual rate appropriate for the trainee’s phase of training (ST1,2 or 3) and the number of assessments that need to be done for the ES review is pro-rata for the duration of the Educational Review period.

Keep in Touch Days - KIT Days

When trainees go on maternity leave they are regarded as being “Out of Post” (OOP) and as such there is no legal obligation for the trainee to maintain their e-Portfolio or do any work towards passing the WPBA part of the MRCGP. However they can take the CSA and/or the AKT parts of the MRCGP if they so wish To do so the trainee must sit the examination during a “Keep in touch”(KIT) day.

A trainee may work for up to a maximum of 10 keeping in touch days during her maternity leave. The work does not have to be consecutive and can include training or other activities that enable the employee to keep in touch with the workplace. These keeping in touch days do not normally count towards the 36 months training requirement. It should be noted that there is no central funding or reimbursements to support KIT days.

Although there is no obligation to maintain the e-portfolio it is considered beneficial if some entries are added – reading, professional conversations from KIT days etc – this would demonstrate ongoing engagement in the learning process, whatever decision the trainee makes about their future.

Please see  for further guidance.

(Credit: HEE Wessex and Dr Peter Johnson, TPD St Helens & Knowsley)


Update 23/05/2019 

HRMC have confirmed that KIT days should only be worked whilst trainees are in receipt of statutory maternity pay (SMP) i.e. after the first two weeks of compulsory maternity leave and subsequent 37 weeks. KIT days are not to be worked in the unpaid period of leave or in annual leave. The reason for this is that trainees should have SMP deducted for any KIT day worked, therefore in the no pay period, there is no SMP to deduct. In addition, KIT days cannot be worked during the annual leave period as this would result in a double payment. 


We appreciate that the above ruling will a very significant impact on the Supported Return to Training Scheme and recognise that trainees are likely to benefit the most from undertaking training, teaching, simulation and shadowing days as near as possible to their actual return to training. 


We discussed the above with HEE NW last week and they have agreed to the following, as a solution to the above:

  • The Lead Employer will facilitate trainees to undertake Supported Return to Training days during their period of accrued annual leave.
  • Trainees will be allowed to take up to 10 days of supportive activities during their annual leave period. 
  • The total number of KIT days and Supportive Return to Training days combined shall not exceed 10 days.
  • Any trainee who uses a day of annual leave to undertake such training will be given the annual leave day back and this must be taken prior to their return to work.
  • These days cannot be used to undertake locum work.
  • Any trainee wishing to undertake a Supportive Return to Training day should contact the Lead Employer who will provide guidance and support to facilitate these days.

Return to Training Guidance

Trainees who have been off work for more than 3 months will be required to attend a Return To Training meeting with their Training Programme Director and Educational Supervisor.  The policy is attached below.

Return to Training Guidance Document


Medical Education Reform Programme around Enhancing Supervision for Postgraduate Doctors in Training Resources 

The pack includes:

  1. A report that sets out the different kinds of supervision (educational, clinical and workplace) and what good supervision looks like
  2. A handbook for trainees and trainers
  3. A benchmarking document for Trusts to help them to assess whether they are providing good supervision
  4. An animation for trainees explaining in simple terms what good supervision looks and what they should expect from their supervisors.


The first three are attached and the animation can be found on the website at

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