As part of the 2017-18 Contract with the DfE, NatSIP and OnLineTraining Limited (OLT) are working in partnership to make funded training places on OLT blended learning courses available to frontline teaching staff, with the support of cohort tutors who are themselves SI professionals. For more on the courses available, and on OLT itself, please see here.
In the first year of partnership under the DfE funded contract (2016-17) for workforce development, there were 40 tutors trained who delivered the training to 228 participants. We are now the second year of funding and word has been spreading about the quality and effectiveness of the courses, resulting in an increase of participation across the UK. Some sensory services have just started, and others are now offering an additional course after the success and interest generated through their engagement last year.
The second year of delivery started in April 2017. Since then, 74 SI professionals (who hold the Mandatory Qualification or MQ) have become involved as cohort tutors. Each tutor has to familiarise themselves with the course content and plan how they will deliver the course, and then invites frontline teachers to participate in their cohort. 35 tutors have passed their course, received tutor training and are running or preparing to run a cohort this year. Some 297 participants have started courses and 19 participants have passed so far (November 2017).
The 22 LAs in the preparation stage are:
Birmingham, Caerphilly, Calderdale, Conwy, Durham, Gwynedd Llyw, Hackney, Harrow, Oxfordshire, Hull, Lambeth, Lewisham, Merton, Nottingham City, Oldham, Rotherham, Salford, St Helen’s, Sutton, Walsall, Westminster, Wirral
The following 19 LAs have cohorts running:
Bedford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cumbria, East Ridings, Hackney, Leeds, Milton Keynes, NDCS, Norfolk, Northumberland, Oxfordshire, Slough, Solihull, Southwark, Staffordshire, Suffolk, Waltham Forest, Worcestershire
Recent particpants have said of the courses:
This course has enabled me to understand the different learning needs of the child with VI in my care. I am now more confident in identifying and supporting individual needs. T has become a more independent learner and did very well in the recent SATS tests after accessing the test using adapted papers.
I have developed my strategies I use in the classroom to help M access the curriculum. This VI course has increased my awareness of his overall needs both socially and academically and I feel more confident to help him become a more independent learner. There are obstacles to overcome like time to make resources and getting more input from teachers but I feel it is all heading in the right direction.
The training has helped me to understand how there are so many varied visual impairments. The videos of the case studies were extremely helpful, coming from the child’s point of view. As a result of this this course, I've been able to set realistic goals for F to help him improve and enjoy his learning and to make technology work for him.
This training course has helped me in achieving a greater understanding of MSI and the knowledge base to achieve my goals. Also gave me the tools to resolve learning issues that my students may face and letting me adapt the curriculum and material to accommodate different student so they can make progress.
This MSI course has brought us closer as a class team to discuss at meetings how best to set goals and meet the needs of our learner. A PODD book is now in the process of being made so we can begin to complete those goals. Our learner is also well on the way of achieving her second goal of pointing to the first 6 letters in Read Write Inc. We have also been playing some turn taking games with a friend. I look forward to working alongside Child X to see her achieve all of her goals.
Several members of staff within school completed this course so we have been able to discuss it with each other and relate the information/case studies to our own practise. It has highlighted just how important it is to tap in to the other senses to gain the same information as other children and also how much time a pupil with MSI may need.
I found this course on understanding hearing impairment really useful with a good balance of reading, interactive visuals, videos and quizzes. I liked being able to access the course at a time and place that was appropriate for my lifestyle and that I could dip in and out of it rather than having to complete in one sitting. Really interesting, informative and useful for improving my teaching and general communication with deaf students.
The training has given me insight into the science and biology behind hearing loss, what technology can be used to support but most importantly top tips that I can do in everyday life to support my hearing-impaired students. Some of the tips are so simple I feel confident enough to pass them on to other staff
I have become more self-confident in using sign with students and not to worry about getting it wrong. I now want to know more words and have started practicing whenever I can. The impact on the socialisation of our deaf students is that they will converse with me just as any other student does, which was my aim at the beginning of the course. All the other students see these conversations making it a normal everyday thing that just happens and they see that learning is a continuous ageless process.