Possibility, Curiosity, Openness… we lose this after a while in the same job role as we're often expected to just 'have the answer' as a professional.
It was a cold morning in central London when I arrived at the inner city adult education centre in the borough of Hammersmith and Fulham. The centre reminded me of an old school, with exposed brick corridors of classrooms, high ceilings and the humdrum of shoes pounding the tiled floors.
Topics: Further Education
Derwen College is a very special place. When we visited, we came away feeling proud to work in a sector that does such incredible things every single day. The college works with young people with learning difficulties and disabilities; providing inspirational learning, development and care which aims to transform lives.
Based in Gobowen, a village in Shropshire, England; Derwen College is a residential specialist college, with students attending from across the UK. It's one of the select few Ofsted 'Outstanding' colleges in the UK, an accolade they've achieved for three consecutive inspections.
On the day we visited, the sun shined in all its glory and the drive across the country near Shropshire was idyllic, with nothing on the roads. We walked on to campus and instantly got the feeling that everyone knew each other and was supportive of one another. It seemed every member of staff had a good understanding of every student and could raise praise or concern for them individually. It felt like everyone was a family. The teams were so welcoming and allowed us to explore the place in an open environment and students freely approached and chatted with us. You could just sense the college had such a handle on their learner base that there were no unknowns. As we ambled around, it was also clear how ambitious and courageous the staff were and how keen they were to find continuous improvements in everything they do.
As we continued to walk around the modern space, with its unique architecture that was landscaped and decorated with bright fauna; we got to look at the friendly learning spaces that mixed tradition with a built-for-purpose structure. Everything at Derwen College has been designed around the learners’ needs, providing them with live educational spaces and real 'working' environments such as a farm, farm shop and garden centre; providing the learners with agricultural, retail and business skills. The students even create the produce sold in the retail spaces...we were certainly very tempted by their home-made jams complete with their own creative labels for the jam jars!
In their restaurant, staffed by the students, all hospitality for our meeting was second to none. In the commercial centre, we observed students receiving the help they needed to build confidence in getting a job after college. Progress is measured continuously and the centre has created its own community - by understanding each member of staff and learner. At Derwen, every student is different with different learning requirements and needs. Every ILP has to be absolutely spot on to an appropriate level. They set goals and progression paths for every single one of their students and set achievable and challenging goals that will empower their confidence to step forward into the real world and lead independent, happy lives.
We're proud to be helping Derwen College to empower their learners to reach their full potential. We provide them with a student management system, ebs, and a self-assessment and quality improvement planning tool, Actionplan+ which provide staff at the college with the much-needed information about their students.
Topics: Further Education
Our visit to the University of St Andrews was an unusual one as it started with a trip to the local airport. After battling with holiday makers, a short flight, a tram, two trains, and a taxi, we finally made it to sunny St Andrews, an afternoon ahead of our filming schedule. We took the time to look around the beautiful town and get some ideas for general visual shots in our latest case study with the prestigious university.
Topics: Higher Education
It's no secret that staff at Tribal are passionately dedicated to empowering education around the world. Recently we've been working closely with a whole host of inspiring educators; and after spending time with some of them, we wanted to share their stories. Here's what happened when we went to visit a selection of wonderful inspiring educators…
The skills gap in the UK is back in the spotlight following the triggering of Article 50 and ambitious net migration targets. Tribal Group has taken a look at the problem, the initiatives and what can be done.
Pouring over the weeks' industry magazines, I'm almost hit in the face. Fewer than 25% of information technology jobs in developed countries are held by women. As a female working at Tribal Group, an education software and services company, I almost spill my tea. I knew the gender divide in tech roles was skewed, but I never knew how much.
Not so long ago on a chilly but crisp winter's walk with a friend, she asked me "if you could live in any era, which would you go to and why?"
I thought long and hard. As a child of the 1980s, and now, an adult with a passion for post modernism and a yearning for the roaring 20s, there were plenty of eras for me to explore.
Two years ago I wrote an article snappily entitled “Print power in an attention deficit economy”, where I discussed the topic of printed vs digital text, and whether or not there is a preference. If you haven’t read it, you can read it here. Today, in the long awaited sequel, I'm exploring the far less cleverly titled, yet incredibly complicated topic of ‘words’, and more specifically the consumption of words.