Staffordshire Adult Community Learning aims to improve Learning, Teaching and Assessment by sharing the existing Good and Best Practice to support tutors who are still developing their skills.
There are a number of challenges in doing this as we have a majority of sub-contracted provision, delivered in a wide range of venues across the county by tutors who are often part-time. Nonetheless we are aiming to engage tutors in the process as described below.
Stage 1a – Identification
Staff who carry out observations and class visits or RARPA audits as part of the Quality framework are in a position to identify Best Practice as it happens. Tutors may also identify an aspect of their own teaching for example as part of a supported experiment or following a CPD activity.
Stage 1b – Recording
Good Practice would often be described as part of the process by which it has been identified, for example on an Observation of Learning and Teaching report or Class visit report. Provider managers may feed back about Good practice and Grade 1 observations via the online form.
There may also be evidence of the practice for example course documentation, learning resources or even a video or audio recording of part of a session.
ACL Quality managers discuss Good Practice seen during Quality Team meetings and the minutes of these complete the Recording, Validation and Sharing stages as described below.
Stage 2 – Validation
Before the practice identified is shared it is proper for it to be validated in the same way that class visits and OLTs are moderated and validated. Again in the case of Good Practice which is identified within the existing Quality Framework, this will happen as part of the existing validation/moderation procedures ie during OLT moderation etc.
Stage 3 – Sharing
Once the Good Practice has been validated it is important for it to be communicated effectively to other tutors so that the practice can be spread. There a numerous ways for this to happen (more or less formally)
- Mentoring or OLT action plans based on developmental feedback.
- CPD events which model Good Practice
- Tutor Induction Meetings where Good Practice is shared and discussed.
- Monthly Blog for tutors focussing on Learning, Teaching and Assessment: https://staffsacl.wordpress.com/
- CPD and other resources can also be accessed from the site: www.staffsacl.wordpress.com
- Tutor meetings held by providers, ideally with “Good Practice” as a minuted Agenda item.
- On-going support to tutors (individually or groups of tutors) by ACL Quality Managers.
The methods above would reach tutors directly. As our Provider managers also play an important role in encouraging tutors’ CPD, the following methods are also relevant in sharing information initially with managers, who can then cascade to their own tutors.
- Twitter for managers and observers to tweet examples of Best Practice observed: @staffsACLTL #staffsaclbestpractice
- Provider newsletter and network meetings which highlight grade 1s and Good Practice examples.
Stage 4 – Transfer
This is the stage where other colleagues action the Best Practice identified. Tutors are encouraged to contact the Teaching and Learning Advisors/Quality Managers (Amanda or Clare) if they would like support at this stage.
Stage 5 – Monitoring
Where the Good Practice has been shared as part of a post-observation or mentoring action plan, progress will be monitored as part of the action plan. Otherwise tutors can use Sharing Best Practice Stage 5 Report (see link below) to evaluate the success and impact of the practice they have implemented.
If the implementation of the practice was different from the original Good Practice it may be that this form actually feeds back into the process at the (Validation Stage 2) and could, in turn, be shared as a variation on the original Good Practice.
As previously, ACL Quality Managers can report directly on monitoring of shared good practice at Quality Team meetings, and a spreadsheet will be kept.
Stage 6 – Impact Assessment
Observation and mentoring Action plans and Sharing Best Practice Stage 5 Reports should then be submitted to the Quality Team, who will also consider examples gathered on the spreadsheet, so that the impact can be assessed and recorded. This will then inform future CPD events and the ACL Self-Assessment Report.