The Blog Archives

The Blog

How small changes can make a big difference in student attendance

Bibi Groot and Susannah Hume, Behavioural Insights Team Small changes can have big effects. For example, short and personalised text messages sent to learners can help improve pass rates by 12 per cent. Or, an online writing assignment helped increase attendance rates by nearly 10 per cent. We will discuss these and more results of […]

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Men and mental health – what does it mean for education and training?

Kathryn James, ETF Associate Prince Harry’s frank and honest interview about his own mental health has been praised widely, and rightly so.  His openness can do much to break down the stigma about mental health problems for all, but especially for men. At any one time it is believed that one in five women and one […]

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Refreshing the SEND Exhibition Site

Ruth Perry, SEND consultant and ETF associate, who re-designed the ETF SEND Exhibition Site, reflects on the process of trying to create a truly useful post-16 SEND resource. “A one-stop shop for time-pressed professionals working in post-16 education and training to cover all their SEND needs.”  How’s that for a brief to refresh the Education […]

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The role of senior leaders and managers in inclusive learning

Joyce Deere worked for 16 years as an inspector, with a specialism in SEND.  She is currently working as a consultant and researcher, supporting improving inclusive practice across the FE sector. It is encouraging to see the growing recognition of the importance of senior managers and governors / trustees in the strategic planning and monitoring […]

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Leadership programme to improve outcomes for learners with SEND

New guidance and materials for senior leaders, trustees and governors of Further Education (FE) colleges have been produced as part of the SEND Workforce Development Project, led by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF) on behalf of the Department for Education. The guidance, produced by Manchester Metropolitan University and The Inclusion Circle, will be made […]

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How competition can remove barriers for disabled students

Clare Howard, Chief Executive, Natspec The recent blog by Kathryn James discussed how the Paralympics has contributed to changing perceptions of disability. Paralympians, she wrote, are now seen as athletes like any other, and FE can begin to experience the same shift in attitudes relating to learners with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities (SEND) who should be […]

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The lessons we can learn from the Paralympics

  Kathryn James, Project Lead for SEND Over the last four years there has been much made of the success of the Olympics and Paralympics in 2012 and even more so in 2016. Much of this is due to the funding from the Lottery that created an infrastructure that enabled Team GB athletes to receive […]

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Making the Send Reforms Work

Sarah Brown and Michael Frearson from SQW discuss the needs of the FE and skills sector as providers implement the SEND reforms, and consider how the SEND Workforce Development Project can support this process. Ensuring all learners with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) – including those without an EHC (Education, Health and Care) plan […]

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CEO blog: Department Wars : Episode (one thousand and) Four – a New Hope

David Russell, CEO, Education and Training Foundation @DavidRussellETF The Government has abolished BIS (the department which led on FE and skills).  All of FE and HE policy has been moved into DfE.  This now mirrors the position from 2001 to 2007, when the Department was called DfES (Department for Education and Skills).  So what ?  […]

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Why learners value Functional Skills

Alex Stevenson, Head of English, Maths and ESOL at Learning and Work Institute, an independent research and development organisation dedicated to lifelong learning, full employment and inclusion. What do learners really think about Functional Skills? For me, the best part of any research or consultation project is the bit when we get to go out […]

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Your role in making Functional Skills right for the 21st Century

Sue Southwood, Programme Manager, at the Education and Training Foundation @SueSouthwood Although it’s only been open for a few days, it’s encouraging that hundreds of trainers, teachers, leaders and managers have already completed our provider survey on the changes to Functional Skills. This survey is the second part of the Functional Skills Reform Programme that we’re running […]

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Setting the Stage for Self-Management

Richard Wilson, Director, Osca. @richwi1son One of the current big ideas of how to transform the public sector is ‘self-management’. The approach, centred around giving staff autonomy, appears to create big cost savings, service improvements and a much happier work force when applied successfully. Sounds too good to be true? Well it might be, it has […]

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Foundation online learning gets a new look

Europe Singh, Interim Adviser, works on the Digital Estate at the Education and Training Foundation. Foundation online learning www.foundationonline.org.uk (FOL) is the Education and Training Foundation’s moodle-based learning environment.  Since we relaunched the environment under ETF’s banner in March 2014 the use of the variety of staff development programmes has been steadily growing. The number of […]

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ELMAG: more than a website or portal

Maureen Boston, Programme Manager at the Education and Training Foundation ELMAG is so much more than a website or portal. It is a virtual place where leaders, managers, governors and clerks can come together and enhance their professional development. Utilising the wide variety of resource CPD available, connections with others in the sector and ability […]

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Reforming maths and English Functional Skills

Sue Southwood, Programme Manager, at the Education and Training Foundation @SueSouthwood Learners without ‘good passes’ in GCSE maths and English are shut out of many opportunities. They need a different way to improve their skills and gain a qualification that has credibility with employers. The Maths and English Functional Skills Reform Programme offers a unique opportunity to […]

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