2 Star Badge - Connected and Effective (Leading)

Fionna Mortimer
22nd February 2021

This reflection was contributed as a submission for a 2 Star Badge in Connected and Effective (Leading)

Give a brief description of your work context and responsibilities, e.g. your teaching background, experience, type of organisation (e.g. FE college, ACL), subject/curriculum you teach/lead, your learners (skills level, any particular inclusion needs, age range of group, size of group)

Head of Department for an outreach centre offering L1-L3 to Adult learners for a FE college. There are 11 staff who work with those who have not engaged well with education in the past including current and ex-offenders. manage work for the JCP offering specific projects across East Kent working with a variety of partners.

How did you use the learning from this/these module(s) (briefly describe the learning context, with a focus on Connected and Effective)

The tutors at the EKC Training Centre have been tasked engage new digital means of teaching, learning and assessment. The site is based adjacent to a Category D Prison but is classed as external training however the location has meant that we only received fibre broadband in late 2019 therefore the tutors had not been able to utilise digital technology to a great extent before this. The... more

How did you adapt/modify activities and/or resources for your context providing alternative approaches with specific reference to Connected and Effective practices?

Therefore, all course files are now on OneNote and all learners have access to their own area where they can save and submit work. Additionally, all the quality processes are now on OneNote which means they can be accessed quickly but still without the need to be on site and more than one person can work on the portfolios at the same time. In addition, it allows me to view the situation on... more

Provide any examples of any new approaches tested out.

New approaches used in our department are the use of Classroom OneNote for assessment and tracking for all courses. The Quality System is all digital and stored in the cloud so can be worked on by numerous staff at the same time as well as being able to be shared to external colleagues for EQA visits. Tracking of budgets and enrolments are all electronic and again saved in the cloud so that... more

What worked well, or did not work so well? How would you approach the activity/use the resource differently next time?

The digital quality system and portfolios were shared with EQAs during the lockdown and this meant that we could continue our direct claims status and the learners did not have to wait to for their certificates. The tutors had to reflect on their own digital abilities and identify gaps in their knowledge and skills then we worked together on a plan to update and fill competency gaps. This is... more

How did the learning from the module(s) impact on the quality of the learning experience?

The fact that the tutors have had to undertake this task has improved the tracking of progress and the speed of assessment and feedback with the added benefit of enabling them for their future as they learn how to deal with digital tools which has broken down barriers and allowed access where it was difficult before. It has increased productivity for the whole team which has meant that they... more

How have you initiated strategic change/quality improvement in relation to Connected and Effective, eg at a peer, department, organisational, regional, national level)?

The college has introduced a Digital Development Plan and the heads of department will be working with their staff to ensure they undertake the skills review regarding their digital capabilities, knowledge and understanding. This will lead to planning a set of CPD tasks to complete during the year based around improving their ability to work more digitally. They need to be ready to embrace... more

What will be your next step in bringing about further change?

the college has moved to lots of online seminars, webinars, training and meeting on line - the benefit of not having to travel for an hour each way is massive and I will be asking that all meetings can be carried out remotely for all staff where possible as this is a positive move for physical and mental well-being. In the past for staff to engage with their DTLS or TAQA i have had to stop... more

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