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Malcolm Parkes Basic Skills Co-ordinator LSC Wiltshire and Swindon.

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Presentation on theme: "Malcolm Parkes Basic Skills Co-ordinator LSC Wiltshire and Swindon."— Presentation transcript:

1 Malcolm Parkes Basic Skills Co-ordinator LSC Wiltshire and Swindon

2 Basic Skills Capacity Building: The Wiltshire and Swindon Experience

3 Structure of Presentation Our Basic Skills Capacity Building Exercise Issues Arising Our Next Steps Discussion

4 Our Starting Point 2001: Publication of Skills for Life Local target: 11,104 learner achievements by 2004 Local Area Plan and Basic Skills Strategic Forum Baseline figures: 1,000 achievements a year (prior to new qualifications)

5 Review of staffing levels Strategic Forum Task Group Organisations involved Role of Curriculum Leaders Variable levels of staffing 18 FTEs (60-70 individual teachers) Predominately part-time staff Many holding C&G 9281

6 Precipitating factors in our Decision Concern about reaching our targets Introduction of new specialist teaching qualifications Need for co-operative working Successful bid to become Employer Training Pilot (ETP) area

7 Recruitment Campaign

8 Upbeat campaign message Marketing agency: striking images Unsuccessfully explored routes to retired teachers Flyers circulated through voluntary sector and through libraries Targeted qualified teachers and trainers with personal Literacy/Numeracy skills at Level 4

9 Outcomes of Recruitment Campaign (1) Over 300 enquiries Over 220 attended briefing events across Wiltshire Over 200 applications received Small provider assessor group selected 124 to forward to Induction programme Individual Interviews and Action Plans

10 Outcomes of Recruitment Campaign (2) 30 commenced Level 4 Literacy 6 travelled to Taunton for Level 4 Numeracy 45 offered places on Level 3 programmes Others offered Level 2 or even Basic Skills

11 Management of Capacity Building Programmes Invitation to tender to national organisations engaged with Basic Skills BSA awarded tender Gwen Blake given 0.5 post to manage programmes Brief to work with providers to set up courses and to develop capacity to deliver programmes locally in future

12 Capacity Building Programmes During 2002-3: Level 4 Literacy hosted by Wiltshire College (Jane Mace, Ellayne Fowler) accredited by Oxford Brookes University Level 4 Numeracy offered regionally at Taunton accredited by Plymouth University Pre-Level 3 courses offered locally

13 Immediate Outcomes 26 New Teachers completed Level 4 programmes (25 Literacy and 1 Numeracy) Gained employment as BS teachers during programmes 4 existing teachers gained Level 4 (3 Literacy and 1 Numeracy) Positive feedback

14 Longer term Outcomes Agreement to form a W&S Basic Skills Professional Development Network Capacity for local delivery of Literacy and Numeracy at both Levels 3 and 4 during 2003-4 More full-time teaching positions within Wiltshire and Swindon Progress towards targets despite use of most experienced teachers on capacity building

15 Lessons Learned Big reservoir of goodwill towards Skills for Life project Willingness to work collaboratively to introduce new qualifications Need to build capacity to build capacity Need to pre-plan placements Need for effective mentoring

16 Issues Arising Are Capacity Building exercises necessary?

17 Case Against Capacity Building Exercises Sufficient Learners are already engaged in learning…. to meet the Skills for Life targets… but their achievements are not being accredited

18 Case for Capacity Building Exercises Targets are only one measure of progress towards the vision contained in Skills for Life and in Moser report Extension of targets to 2007 (and to 2010) when each learner can only be counted once towards targets Numeracy, numeracy and numeracy!

19 And, in any case…. What do we mean by Capacity Building?

20 Building Capacity within Existing or within New Providers? Targeting capacity building exercises at individuals or at organisations? (National CPD, WBL Pilot and our own experience targeting individuals) Building capacity within the Voluntary Sector? (The Learning Curve experience) Building capacity within WBL and other Providers? (The Wiltshire and Swindon ETP experience)

21 Are Level 4 Specialist Top-up Programmes adequate as Capacity Building Exercises? Top-up programmes presume PGCE/Cert Ed and high personal skills Effects on staff from WBL and other would-be Basic Skills providers? Impact on pedagogical practice? For new teachers? For existing teachers?

22 How sustainable is the Top-up model? Effects on new recruits to Basic Skills teaching - now and in the future?

23 Generic or Specific Capacity Building Exercises? Are Level 4 programmes sufficient to build capacity to deliver in the workplace? In the voluntary sector? In the Schools context? With specific hard to reach client groups? Should FLLN training and workplace Basic Skills training involve additional courses? Should all Basic Skills teachers be expected to work in all contexts? Or would capacity be increased by specialisation?

24 Building Capacity in Leadership and Management Who took up Leadership and Management training offer within National CPD programme? Will training exercises affect the historically low levels of Management Resource given to Basic Skills? Will Leadership and Management training address specialist areas (e.g Workplace, FLLN, etc)

25 Capacity Building or Continuing Professional Development? A false opposition? In both theory and in practice? Increased capacity to deliver high quality programmes at all curriculum levels? Increased capacity to move from ABE to Skills for Life? What do existing staff who have taken Level 4 programmes think of it as CPD?

26 Capacity Building for the Whole Organisation? Are front of house staff aware of Basic Skills issues? Do Business Development staff promote Skills for Life? Are all learners screened for Basic Skills needs as part of pre-course counselling? Do Programme teams know what Literacy and numeracy skills are needed to effectively participate in their classes?

27 Capacity Building for the Whole Organisation - continued How do retention, completion and achievement rates map against Basic Skills needs? What part do Basic Skills play in learner progression routes? Do the Senior Management promulgate a vision of Skills for Life within the whole institution?

28 Capacity Building for the Whole Organisation - continued Has an audit of staffs own needs been conducted? Does the organisation address the Basic Skills needs of its own staff?

29 Should Basic Skills Capacity Building be limited to Basic Skills Tutors? What do vocational and academic tutors need to know? What do vocational and academic tutors need to do?

30 Our Next Steps (1) Continue collaborative working Maintain CPD Network and Management structure Continue Level 4 training (with increased mentoring) Specialist Training (WPBS and FLLN) Foundation Courses at Levels 3 and 4

31 Our Next Steps (2) Promote the Whole College approach Increase Level 3 provision Make business case for Level 3 training Make link between changes to PGCE curriculum, changes to Additional Learning Support funding, the 50% or 80 hours funding uplift, and to retention, completion and achievement rates

32 Discussion

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