Rethinking Teacher Training in Further Education

As colleges and training providers face the challenges of responding to a post-Covid-19 world and the development and delivery of the skills that are going to achieve the ambitions of the Build Back Better agenda, it has never been more critical to invest in the skills and training of teachers and trainers in further education (FE). Teaching staff need the skills, confidence, and commitment to advance learners’ skills, aspirations, careers, and high quality, expertly informed teacher training is crucial to this.

The recently published Skills White Paper makes a compelling case for supporting outstanding teaching and ensures that initial teacher education in FE is driven by quality, attractive and accessible training routes. Therefore, colleagues new to teaching in FE and serving teachers needing to upskill need to have access to contemporary programmes of teacher training that build the knowledge, skills and behaviours that ensure outstanding classroom practice.

Therefore, here at FE Associates (FEA), we launched the first national Level 5 Learning and Skills Teacher Apprenticeship Standard, bringing teachers from across the sector to learn and develop collaboratively and confidently. Through our new  Teaching Matters division, this new innovative approach to teacher development in further education focuses on building the skills of dual professionals through the expertise of leading teaching and learning experts such as Deborah McVey and Annie Pendry, who work with trainees to hone their teaching skills through the development of a national community of teaching practice.

In addition, individualised coaching support provided by leading practitioners, many of whom with current inspection experience, ensures trainees are supported by those at the forefront of quality assurance and improvement.

Many levy paying sector employers are not fully utilising their apprenticeship levy, so this is a golden opportunity for colleges and training providers to build their talent pipeline, drive excellence, and utilise their levy.

The development of FEA’s Teaching Matters division and the introduction of the nationally offered Level 5 Apprenticeship Standard for trainee teachers in FE is the brainchild of FEA Commercial Director Dave Sykes, who commented: “All of us at FEA are passionate about driving the quality of teaching and learning across the sector. We have a well-established track record in training and development and Teaching Matters, and apprenticeship delivery was very much a natural progression for us at FEA.”

Donna Clifford, Programme Director, considers the Teaching Matters Level 5 Apprenticeship Standard unique. It identifies the opportunities trainees have to learn from true experts alongside teachers from across the sector and the chance to gain a view informed by a wide range of practice.

Since launching Teaching Matters and securing a place on the Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers, the Teaching Matters offer has been extended to include a sector-specific Level 4 Apprenticeship Standard for Quality Practitioners and a broader range of teacher development programmes.

 

If you have any questions about Teaching Matters programmes, contact us via the enquiry form linked below or call 01454 617 707.

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