The Institute for Learningreviews 2012 and the development of the new further education (FE) guild of which they are a senior member.
In a year when the further education and skills system has again experienced significant change, there is much for the Institute for Learning (IfL) and our members – teachers and trainers throughout the diverse sector – to celebrate.
IfL’s hard-fought campaign for Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) to be recognised for teaching in school settings as well as further education, for the benefit of young people’s learning, culminated in a change of legislation, which came into force on 1 April 2012. More than 10,000 teachers and trainers in further education and skills who have attained QTLS status through professional formation, conferred by IfL, now have the equivalent of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and may be appointed to permanent positions as qualified teachers.
Government regulations requiring FE teachers to register with IfLwere removed at the end of September 2012, and IfLhas returned to its roots as a voluntary professional body and independent membership organisation with over 77,000 members. IfL’s focus is on excellent teaching and training; raising the status of the profession; and giving services and benefits that members want and say that they value for their practice.
IfL is pleased to be contributing to a new movement focusing on creating conditions that enable great teaching and learning to flourish. IfLsupports members’ action research and has held several regional seminars to inform the work of the Commission on Adult Vocational Teaching and Learning (CAVTL); IfLis working with leading academics from the universities of Oxford and Cardiff on a new practitioner research programme for teachers and trainers; and we have created several seminars with the 157 Group, the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) and the Institute of Education on what makes great teaching and learning.
This year, IfL’s responses to a range of government and sector consultations were again informed by the views of thousands of IfLmembers. This included making a very strong case, based on over 5,000 members' views, for initial teacher training to remain as a national government policy, which it has.
IfL is a key partner in the development of a new FE guild, with other independent membership bodies, land-based colleges and trade unions. We are working collectively to support the two lead partners, the Association of Colleges (AoC) and the Association of Employment and Learning Providers(AELP).
High-quality vocational teaching and learning is crucial to the development of the skills this nation needs. Teachers and trainers in further education and apprenticeships need to be dual professionals: expert and up to date in their vocational or subject area and in teaching and learning methods. As their professional body, IfLwill continue to play a distinctive role in supporting them, for the benefit of their learners and the economy.