NatSIP has entered into a contract with DfE for 2016 - 17 with a great emphasis on workforce development.
As part of this we have committed to training 300 teachers and teaching assistants who are working with children and young people with sensory impairment, in partnership with OnLineTraining (OLT).
The online training courses are aimed at teachers and teaching assistants who are working directly with children to help them achieve better outcomes. Those following the courses are asked to set three goals for young person with whom they are working, and then to identify three interventions to achieve these goals.
The courses are intended to be delivered by those QTSIs (with the MQ in HI, MSI or VI) normally providing support to schools, who act as online tutors. This model has proved to be highly effective in achieving improved outcomes. There is built in the evaluation both for the course participant in the form of a pre and post course rating scale, and also for pupils in the form of goal attainment scaling to assess the extent to which positive outcomes have been achieved.
As a result, those delivering the courses have significant levels of management information demonstrating the effectiveness of their delivery, and provides a route through which services can enhance the level of support that they provide to schools. One of the comments which has been made by those running the courses, is that it raises the level of professional dialogue between themselves and those working in schools, because “you know what they know “, and can therefore assume a prior level of knowledge as a starting point for any discussion.
We are looking to recruit 20 to 25 qualified teachers of SI covering HI, VI and MSI, drawn from all parts of the country.
To achieve our total of 300, each tutor will need to recruit at least 12 teachers and/or teaching assistants to their course, ideally drawn from their existing school or setting caseload. These places will be funded from the DfE contract. The course would normally be delivered over a period of 6 – 10 weeks, the maximum being a school term and the ensuing school holiday. Ideally this includes one or more face to face sessions which may be delivered to the whole group, or incorporated into normal school visits as part of normal service delivery. The time generated in online tutoring is approximately 30 minutes per participant, so 6 hours for a cohort of 12.
At the end of the DfE contract programme tutors will be able to continue delivering the courses to subsequent cohorts, although course participants will have to pay a registration fee. Services may also want to develop a business model based on the OLT model. OLT will provide advice and guidance for those subsequently wanting to proceed in this way.