Taking Teaching Further Sussex (TTF Sussex) ran between Summer 2019 and Spring 2020 and was a new industry mentoring programme, supporting professionals in construction, STEM and digital sector roles to work closely with tutors and course designers within post-16 technical education.
TTF Sussex formed part of the Department for Education (DfE) funded Taking Teaching Further initiative managed on its behalf by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF). The initiative funded Further Education (FE) providers to encourage experienced industry professionals from key sectors into full or part-time FE teaching roles. Taking Teaching Further also supported the ongoing exchange between FE providers and industry so that students can gain the knowledge and skills that employers need.
The Sussex Council of Training Providers (SCTP) is a local member network of FE, skills & work-based learning providers, strategic partners and associate organisations. SCTP has over 80 members, ranging from micro-providers through to some of the largest colleges, local authorities, universities and training providers in the country. A thriving associate and partner membership also includes a number of national awarding bodies, eLearning providers, Local Authorities and CEIAG networks.
The innovative TTF Sussex scheme was devised by SCTP to generate new and improved opportunities for industry professionals to enter vocational and technical teaching, and to support curriculum development through sharing of insight and skills. TTF Sussex aimed to fully explore these opportunities with participants throughout the scheme, and to offer practical support to those in industry, considering ∗dual professional teaching and assessing roles alongside their industry practice.
SCTP previously undertook a regional ‘Teach Too’ research project that consulted with over 40 Sussex based employers, colleges and training providers. Findings highlighted a critical shortage of construction, engineering and tech sector specialists being involved in the design and delivery of training, needed by people in Sussex in order to develop their careers, in these growth sectors.
We understand that Sussex (particularly Brighton, Hastings and Worthing) is the freelance and home-working capital of the UK, with more people opting for portfolio careers and dual professionalisms than anywhere else. However, teaching or mentoring in technical and vocational education is rarely promoted to this group of professionals as a career development opportunity.
What did the project involve?
Following the application process, successful applicants were matched with a local course leader in order to co-design a mentoring programme. An independent facilitator helped them to create an exciting programme of learning, teaching, work-shadowing, advising on latest industry knowledge and challenging assumptions.
FOR EDUCATION & TRAINING
Working closely with a professional from the above sectors as a mentor – sharing knowledge and skills to provide a better understanding of the FE sector and how their professional subject is taught. In addition, helping the mentee discover what a role in FE could look-like for them. As a mentor, tutors wiould better understand from their industry partner how to embed current professional best practice into teaching.