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FE tutors rock!

Discussion in 'Further Education' started by Hippy2, Oct 26, 2011.

  1. You are spot on, we should start "The Plastic fantastic fighters club".

    I am glad to find someone who has witnessed the same.
    I have interviewed too many learners who's difficulties have gone undetected this includes a learner who could not write his own name, he progressed from Level One Hairdressing to Level Three and is currently carving a name for himself in competition work. I caught up with him recently at a trade show and he said "without college, I would never enter competitions because how else would I complete the competition application form.

    Do not get me started on "GCSEs grades" it's half term and I am trying to maintain a "zen like state".

    I am tutoring a learner who reported that she had spent the last four years of secondary school back of class, hiding behind her hair so she did not have to "read aloud". Reason for this she cannot read and she has a C Grade English?
    I was at a training course recently and part of the homework was to produce a set of trigger cards. The stickers and cards were given out all we had to do was stick the things on easy . Four of the primary teachers complained about the time it would take!
  2. Hear, Hear Hippy2 - I am sooo glad to work in FE and like Pobble constantly horrified by our learner's stories from school!
  3. BillyBobJoe

    BillyBobJoe Lead commenter

    I think it's worth remembering that you're only hearing one side of a story, and it's rarely as straight forward as is portrayed. Having dealt with students at school who use ADHD or other SENs as an excuse for poor behaviour (as well as students who work hard to deal with the difficulties they have), I'd be very wary about jumping to conclusions. Working in FE I get horror stories from school and from other colleges, but I don't think it's ever quite as clear cut as is made out. Yes, in some cases due to stress or lack of appropriate training staff in schools may not always react in the best way, but the very fact that some of these students have wound up in your classes may indicate a selection bias - there will be other students with similar problems for whom school worked and their teachers worked miracles. Likewise there will be dropouts from college who will find every excuse o blame hardworking lecturers for their lack of success.
  4. Am not sure how much I am rocking at the moment. More of a wobble I think!
    Anyway, I agree with all of the above - we find students struggling like mad because they were not identified throughout their school years as having an LD and, on the other hand, we have those who try very hard to do nothing at all unless someone is sitting next to them doing it for them because "that's what happened in school!".
    Such is life I suppose.
  5. Georgia99

    Georgia99 New commenter

    I have PGCE 14-19 which was through the secondary route. I teach a vocational subject and most of my school teaching hours during the PGCE were with 6th form with just a couple of hours teaching Year 11.
    I worked for a private training provider after I finished the PGCE with learners age 16 to adult. I heard lots of stories from learners about school failing them or not diagnosing their LD. I felt appalled by this and when I was offered a secondary school job (better money!) I looked forward to being able to really make a difference in school.
    The problem is that I now teach nearly all under 16s (Year 9-11). Because of my limited experience of lower school during the PGCE, I was not prepared for the challenges I faced. Behaviour being the main issue and I can spend half the lesson trying to get students to even make a start with the learning activity. My typical class size is 30 and while 20 might happily proceed and allow me the opportunity to detect any LDs, there might be 10 who point blank refuse to do a single thing all lesson. This makes any form of assessment of their ability impossible. I have written up the issues with these students and passed them to the pastoral support team for monitoring and I continue to do this every lesson.
    While I completely appreciate that there are teachers out there who fail students, it is important to realise the difficulties of teaching in secondary school in comparison to FE.
    I personally have a huge amount of respect for FE and lecturers. The sector has the experience needed for the vocational subjects they deliver, compared to schools who deliver BTEC courses, often using non specialist teachers. I am an ex health professional and I have never been to a school interview where this has been valued (FE I have). In my school, Health and Social Care is taught by an ex Science teacher who has never worked in the sector. I teach Social Sciences and have asked to teach some HSC due to my vast experience and related degree and was told 'no' because a Scientist should teach it due to the biological element. Hmmm what about my previous experience? What about the Anatomy I studied during my degree? Well apparantly that isn't relevant or important in the teaching of HSC.
    I got chatting to a couple of 6th formers the other week who were unhappy and suggested they look at transferring to FE (naughty I know!). They emailed me the other day to say they have made the move and love it. I dropped out of 6th form myself and later went to FE and it was the best move ever.
  6. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    Agreed :) Good post.
  7. May I offer apologies on behalf of those ignorant enough to assume that anyone with dyslexia is dumb?
    Some of my brightest students are dyslexic and every year I get to learn more useful teaching strategies from them than I ever learned when training.
    I think this post was started because we do notice in FE that some students are disadvantaged, as you seem to have been, because schools have different criteria.
    Congratulations on the results and good luck for the A2s.

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