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Archive: September 2020

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Elizabeth Chadwick – MEd SEND

 

An Interview with Elizabeth Chadwick – MEd SEND

Elizabeth is currently Head of the Educational Achievement Department/SENCO at the British school in Bogota, Colombia, working with both primary and secondary aged children. Her special interests within SEN include; Dyslexia and Dyscalculia. Elizabeth is also interested in developing her skills further, stating – “I would like to do some professional training in autism spectrum disorder. I find working with students on the autism spectrum interesting, but feel I need better tools to teach them”. After studying with our sister company Dyslexia Action Elizabeth then decided to join our MEd SEND programme at Real Training. Here is how she found her time studying with us.

What made you choose the Real Training courses over other options? 

I had already completed my postgraduate diploma in Dyslexia and Literacy with Dyslexia Action and decided to complete the MEd Send with Real Training as the easy to access online learning element made it the best choice for my situation. I like that the Real Training courses are self-paced, but very well structured to support this way of learning. Real Training courses are diverse and the Enquiry Based SEND module allowed me to further develop my interests within my work setting. I like that I was able to choose my topic and be supported in my decision. My tutor was always available to guide me and help me talk through my ideas.

What was your experience of learning with Real Training?

Jane was always very supportive and answered my questions quickly. Our tutorials were to the point and useful – Jane often let me talk through ideas which really helped me to organise my thoughts. I felt that the way the tasks built up was particularly helpful, resulting in the final written task coming together in a logical manner. I never felt overwhelmed by the amount of work. I liked comparing two pieces of literature before plunging into the complete literature review. I also liked that all the tasks could be used for the assessments. I loved being able to read the whole course before starting. It was useful to have an online journal to note my thoughts down in along the way and discussion forums to share ideas and see what other course members were doing. The progress bar really helped motivate me! I have already recommended Real Training to colleagues and at least one is going to apply for the MEd SEND course. Thank you! It’s been a long journey and I’ve finally reached the end…I hope to take the International SENCO course next, but for now…rest!

How have the courses helped make an impact at school?

The course has resulted in the development of an on-going project to teach metacognitive skills to Year 7 students across core subjects. The current students will also benefit from the teaching of explicit maths specific metacognitive strategies. I am now a better-prepared teacher which will benefit my students and the school. Alongside this, I have also improved my relationships within the maths department and have gained the ability to speak with more knowledge-based information during meetings.

How have the courses helped develop you as an educational professional and what do you hope to achieve with the new knowledge/skills in the future?

The courses have improved teaching standards and resulted in updated best practice. They have provided me with the ability to have discussions on best practice during discussions with colleagues in the maths department. I also now feel more confident giving advice to my colleagues on teaching methods that work well for students with Dyscalculia. Furthermore, I would now like to continue to study Dyscalculia and become a specialist teacher in this area in the future. Overall, the courses have provided me with a renewed interest in teaching children who are struggling and improved my abilities as a maths teacher in general.

 

 

 

Real Group’s Dyslexia Action launches a NEW CPD Short Course – The Emotionally Connected Classroom!

The Emotionally Connected ClassroomMany schools have been thinking about how they manage transitions sensitively and kindly for their pupils and staff. Recent evidence provided by Optimus Education and the Education Endowment Foundation has revealed the importance of providing teachers and senior leaders opportunities to continue their professional development (CPD) to help support pupils with social, emotional, and mental health needs. Over the past months, the education support team at our sister company, Dyslexia Action, has been working on new CPD courses to allow professionals to develop and enhance their current skills and understanding of Social, Emotional, and Mental Health (SEMH).  This week, they launched their first CPD SEMH course, The Emotionally Connected Classroom, with the first cohort beginning on 18 November.

The Emotionally Connected Classroom

This Level 5 unit aims to provide an understanding of the impact of emotions on the thinking brain and its implications for learning. It aims to provide an introduction to key elements of current research and practice in mentalisation theory (understanding the mental state of oneself and others) and emotional coaching. The importance of connectedness and relationships is emphasised throughout. For more information on this course, please click here.

How is The Emotionally Connected Classroom online course delivered?

The Emotionally Connected Classroom online course will be delivered on Real Group’s Campus Online learning environment. Campus Online offers you the flexibility to organise your time to fit around your professional and personal commitments.  It also saves you the time and expense of travel and classroom attendance.

Although the course is fully online, you will be supported every step of the way by an experienced tutor and have opportunities to read and contribute to the discussion forum on the course site. The forums help participants to learn, test out, develop, and refine ideas.

Participants joining Campus Online will be given access to a wide range of e-learning resources. These include presentations, articles, exercises, videos, and follow-up activities and tasks for participants to carry out.

Accreditation 

The Relating Classroom online unit has been submitted for accreditation which is due to be awarded by The CPD Standards Office in November 2020.

Progression 

The Emotionally Connected Classroom is part of Dyslexia Action’s Level 5 SEMH CPD Programme. Eight further units focused on SEMH are currently under development.

How do I register for the November cohort?

The Emotionally Connected Classroom is available to book for the 18 November cohort. To register, please access the Dyslexia Action online booking form here. Alternatively, please feel free to email Dyslexia Action or call on +44(0) 1784 222304 if you have any questions.

Jennifer Root – NASENCO

An Interview with Jennifer Root – NASENCO

Jennifer is currently working in a school in East Sussex for children and young people aged 7-19. She completed the National Award for SEN Coordination with us here at Real Training this year!  With a particular interest in Autism, she is currently engaged in a project to get the school re-accredited with Autism Accreditation from the National Autistic Society. We asked Jennifer about her experience studying with Real Training, read what she had to say below.

What made you choose the Real Training courses over other options?

I discovered Real Training through word of mouth. One of the other teachers working at my school was just about to start studying through Real Training and recommended them as a training provider. When looking over the course content I felt that it would strongly enhance my knowledge and understanding of the SENCo role, which I had been appointed to post with not much of a robust handover. I found the enrolment process easy and the support from both my appointed tutor and the Real Training team helpful and readily available at each stage of my learning journey. The benefit of distance learning with Real Training was that I was able to be in post whilst simultaneously putting my learning into practice. I was able to liaise with other course members to share experiences, successes and possible strategies to implement in the future. In this way, I still had access to a real learning community, even though our experiences were diverse and roles were across a range of geographic locations. 

What was your experience of learning with Real Training? 

The course was engaging and vital to my development as a SENCo within my school. At times I felt lost in the course content, not knowing where to start, but the online forums through Campus Online and discussion pages were a wonderful source of support and helped me to refocus my thinking and rationalize my ideas. My tutor was a real help, clear and concise in his feedback and supportive in his guidance. This meant that despite my initial fears of writing at Masters Level again (it has been quite a few years!) I was able to reframe my ideas and redraft to ensure that I met the course criteria. I really enjoyed the opportunity to complete the Action Research project. I completed a two-day visit to an outstanding school in Surrey and have maintained links that I made. I have been able to not only return to my setting to implement change, but it has highlighted the real positives already within my school which should be celebrated. I found that the EBSCO library had a wealth of information to delve through and again, whilst initially overwhelming, provided me with a huge amount of academic journals and research papers on which to either support or challenge my own perspectives. 

How has the course helped make an impact at school?

My headteacher Fran Pass commented: ‘The course has enabled Jenny to fine-tune her understanding of SEN and the complexities of ensuring that no child or young person is disadvantaged due to a diagnosis. The course enabled Jenny to route what she already does to a high standard within a theoretical framework.’ I feel that the course has enabled me to create an action plan in order to develop the role and has ensured greater and more knowledgeable support of the children and young people in our school. I look forward to further developing in the role of SENCo and aspire to make links with other SENCos and aspiring SENCos in the local area to share experiences and strategies.

How has the course helped develop you as an educational professional and what do you hope to achieve with the new knowledge/skills in the future?

I feel that now, being a qualified SENCo, I have a greater knowledge and understanding of the role and the ways in which I can lead the staff team to implement change for the benefit of our children and young people. I am now conversant in the theoretical framework and am able to use my learning to underpin my experiences. I found the course hugely valuable and am now more able to perform the role of SENCo within my SEN setting. I encourage any aspiring SENCos to go ahead and enrol on this program, its engaging, varied and informative. Real Training and the tutors invest time and effort into people so that they can really make the most of this learning opportunity.

 

Wirdani Yusoff – Leadership of Inclusive Practice

An Interview with Wirdani Yusoff – Leadership of Inclusive Practice

Wirdani is one of our international students, currently working in Istanbul Turkey as a lecturer at a university. She specialises in Moderate Learning Difficulty, Social, Emotional and Mental Health, Hearing Impairment and Visual Impairment. Wirdani studied the Leadership of Inclusive Practice course, the first mandatory module in the Masters in Leading Inclusive Education which we deliver in partnership with Middlesex University. Read on to see what Wirdani had to say about her experiences studying with us at Real Training and what the course has done for her career.

What made you choose the Real Training courses over other options?

I received a recommendation via Middlesex University, London.

What was your experience of learning with Real Training? 

I have always been interested in pursuing my study in the area of inclusive education especially in the UK, but since I am working in Turkey it is rather difficult to do so. Real Training has bridged that gap by offering an outstanding online learning platform partnered with Middlesex University so that I could take up courses/modules in the area of my interests and learn from anywhere in the world. The portal displays excellent tools and features showing progress, engaging delegates through forums, and a virtual notebook which is useful to support note-taking and share options with the course leader. Tutors/Course Leaders are easy to get hold of and I often receive swift responses from them when help and support are needed.

How has the course helped make an impact at school?

The course has totally changed my view in dealing with students who are often marginalized by society. I have also successfully changed the perspective of my colleagues through a change project I undertook as a part of a requirement for the Practice Analysis Assignment. As a result of the project I led, students’ performance has increased significantly by 40%.

How has the course helped develop you as an educational professional and what do you hope to achieve with the new knowledge/skills in the future?

Fostering an inclusive environment in an educational institution starts with the upper management particularly leaders. This course has helped me become an effective, better leader. Its learning activities, reading materials, and assignments have opened my mind wider to understand more critically, develop my skills, and have practical experience leading and managing a project even better than I had done before. It goes without saying that in the process there are also difficulties I have encountered but in the end, it has been a worthwhile ride. Continuing along these avenues of leading inclusive education, I would definitely continue to use what I have learnt for a future reference to success.

Ian Woollard – CCET Intensive

An Interview with Ian Woollard – CCET Intensive

Ian is the Vice Principal of an International school in Japan, working with children from ages 3-18. Speaking about his particular interest in SEND Ian said “I have always had a strong interest in the social, emotional and behavioural aspect of SEND. I’m always wondering what a child’s behaviour is trying to tell us about the difficulties they are experiencing”. Ian attended one of our 3-day CCET Intensive events held in Singapore in 2019.

What made you choose the Real Training course over other options?

I was looking for an online course that I could complete whilst still at my current school in Japan. Even though I wanted an online course I also wanted the course to have a face-to-face component as I feel that paradigm works best for me. The fact that I could attend the face-to-face part of the training in Singapore was a huge bonus as I wouldn’t have been able to travel to the UK. I had heard about Real Training from word-of-mouth but it was only when I searched for courses online that I saw the name and recognised it. The information about the course that was provided was very clear including what qualifications it would lead to.

What was your experience of learning with Real Training?

I found the CCET intensive course to be an enjoyable and informative course with high-quality resources and support. I would recommend Real Training. The Campus Online learning environment, the support from tutors, and the course content were all excellent. In particular, I would commend the tutors who were friendly, approachable and prompt in their feedback. I never felt worried about bothering my tutor with any questions I had. I would also like to commend Real Training for how they supported students through the COVID-19 pandemic, demonstrating flexibility and understanding. Despite completing the course at this challenging time, the experience was very smooth.

How has the course helped make an impact at school?

I am already starting to build the course into my practice. As a small international school, we do not have the same access to support services as a school might have in the UK. This means we have to handle a lot more in-house. The CCET qualification allows me to expand the in-school testing and assessment that we can provide for SEND students enabling us to have more informed conversations with parents and teachers and to better target support.

How has the course helped develop you as an educational professional and what do you hope to achieve with the new knowledge/skills in the future?

For me personally, I came away from the course with an increased understanding of assessment and testing which helped me to see more clearly how those things fit into the complex puzzle of SEND support and provision. I am not sure about where I would like to go in the future with my professional career as I am in a complex role at school and balancing a lot of different priorities. However, if the opportunity arises I would perhaps like to develop my understanding of specific areas of SEND. I would definitely consider using Real Training again in the future for this.

Kerry Jordain – CPT3A & Free AAU

An Interview with Kerry Jordain – CPT3A & Free AAU

Kerry is the specialist assessor for SEND & EAA at Brixham College, she specialises in Autism and Moderate Learning Difficulties (MLD). Kerry completed the CPT3A qualification with us at Real Training in 2015. Since then she has kept her knowledge up to date by enrolling on our free Access Arrangements Update course, she has highlighted some of her experiences with us and why she was happy she enrolled onto our free AAU Course in 2020!

What made you choose the Real Training courses over other options?

Real Training was a recommendation via a colleague from a further education college.

What was your experience of learning with Real Training?

I was initially concerned about going back to learning after some 25+ years; however, the way Real Training lays out the course, the materials supplied and the portal are all excellent and easy to follow once you get the hang of it. Additionally, tutors/course leaders are easy to get hold of via email if you do get stuck. In the past, after I completed my CPT3A with Real Training, I did other refresher courses. However, when I received an email stating ‘free’ refresher course I decided to try it and am so glad I did. It was concise and easy to follow, it only tells you what ‘you need’ to know and the ability to access discussion forums as well as revisit the refresher course whenever needed is exceptional.

How have the courses helped make an impact at school?

I now run the EAA aspect for exams and line manage TAs and invigilators during the course of mock and formal exams. I also carry out assessments on pupils who have been alerted to the SEND department as struggling – I can then write reports to the teaching staff on my findings and some strategies to use. I also carry out assessments prior to pupils seeing an Educational Psychologist. This is cost-effective to the school and also saves a lot of time, meaning we get Educational Psychologist recommendations very quickly and are able to implement strategies to assist the pupil.

How have the courses helped develop you as an educational professional and what do you hope to achieve with the new knowledge/skills in the future?

The course has given me not only the knowledge to carry out my ‘ever-growing’ role of specialist assessor and EAA office; it has also given me the confidence to attend and run meetings with senior members of staff to implement various ways of tracking a child which will produce the evidence required by JCQ. I have also run a number of TA and invigilator training sessions to ensure JCQ regulations are adhered to. The confidence I have gained by completing this course and achieving CPT3A has helped no end in my work life but has also had an impact on my private life, whereby I feel confident to tackle new or unfamiliar situations.

Taneisha Pascoe Matthews – Full MEd

An Interview with Taneisha Pascoe Matthews – Full MEd

Taneisha has a special interest in Autism, she is a mother of two boys who are both autistic and she uses her knowledge and social platforms to advocate for children with Autism whilst also working in a London Secondary school. Taneisha began her studies with us in May 2015. She completed her full Master of Education in SEND here at Real Training. Taneisha completed the National Award, Autism Spectrum Conditions module, CPT3A and Enquiry to achieve her full Masters. After 4 years of study over a variety of modules, here is her journey through our MEd SEND programme and her thoughts on studying with Real Training.

What made you choose the Real Training courses over other options?

Real Training was the obvious choice for me based on recommendations from two teachers at my school who were completing the National Award for SEN Coordination. They spoke well of the course by highlighting both the practical aspects as well as theoretical areas. Within a year they had moved on to lead SEND Departments which created the opportunity for me to get on the course. The flexibility it afforded with 100% online was exactly what I needed. Once I completed the first course with Real Training and experienced first-hand the amazing culture of support and the readiness to confidently undertake the SENCO role, I decided that I was going to complete a full master’s degree.

What was your experience of learning with Real Training?

The learning experience at Real Training exceeded my expectations. The courses I completed were well written and I was surprised by the skills gained with the courses being 100% online. I was supported throughout by my tutors and it was easy to navigate the Campus Online platform.

How have the courses helped make an impact at school?

I completed the NASENCO course in 2016 and by 2017 I was hired in my current school as Head of Learning Support. I have received some lovely comments from staff about the impact on their teaching based on CPDs I have led. While completing the Enquiry-based project I did an investigation into the ability of staff to make reasonable adjustments for autistic pupils. This has become part of my advocacy on social media platforms. I host a Facebook page called One of Many Autism Voices, providing strategies and UpToDate information for families and educators. As a school, we are known to be a school making reasonable adjustments to SEND learners.

How have the courses helped develop you as an educational professional and what do you hope to achieve with the new knowledge/skills in the future?

The courses I have completed have developed my SEND knowledge to expert level and provided the skills to complete my job with the level of competence that is needed to make a difference for young people. I have been promoted to Assistant Headteacher in the past year and have spoken at several educational conferences both locally and internationally (via Zoom). I am now the specialist assessor for exam dispensations at my school.

Deadlines for NASENCO, iSENCO, MEd and NPQ September cohort dates extended to Friday 18 September

 
September Cohort Dates ExtendedWe have been listening carefully to what schools have been saying about how the beginning of the new academic year has been going, and we fully understand the additional challenges they are facing. As a result, our September cohort dates will be extended to Friday 18 September, in order to take the pressure off of educational settings and avoid as much as possible, delegates who wish to start this month from missing out. Please note, this booking extension does not affect the course submission deadlines.

This extension applies to the following courses and qualifications:

How are the courses delivered? 

The courses are delivered online through our interactive learning platform, Campus Online with the support of an online tutor. An overview of Campus Online’s main features can be found here.

I would like to register for your September cohort, how do I proceed?

You only have to have completed our online booking form by the cohort deadline date of Friday 18 September (17:00 BST), which takes just a couple of minutes to complete. Once submitted, you will have until the end of the month to complete your registration and make the first payment. If joining our September cohort is not possible, it is possible to register to start your next course in January or in May.

Already booked?

The course start date will still be 15 September, so access to course materials will be granted to all delegates who are fully registered with the first payment made, through Campus Online, from this date.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. To book your course, visit our booking page.

NASENCO Award – Ensure your learning environment’s SEN Provision is prepared for the new academic year with Real Training

Ensure your learning environment’s SEN Provision is prepared for the new academic year with Real Training

This coming academic year promises to bring with it challenges that are unprecedented in modern times. Pupils returning to their educational settings will be experiencing a mixture of excitement, anxiety, confusion and relief as things return to an albeit amended version of normal. According to numerous news reports, pupils with special educational needs have suffered more than most during the lockdown, and it has never been so important to ensure that SEN provisions are in place and ready to fire on all cylinders.

If your setting has aspiring SENCOs who want to take the next step in their career with the National Award for SEN Coordination (NASENCO) qualification, you’ve just recruited to the role, or if your existing SENCO wishes to update their skills and knowledge, then Real Training has the perfect solution.

 

Real Training’s NASENCO course – Fully-supported distance learning

Given the unique situation learning environments find themselves in at the beginning of this new academic year, we understand that having staff members, particularly from the SEN  departments, take time out of school to study might be less than desirable. Through our proprietary training platform, Campus Online, and our extensive tutor base, delegates have access to all of the course material and full tutor support wherever they have internet access. There are no face to face sessions to attend at a local college or university. 

In addition, with the exception of the course end date, there are no internal deadlines for course assignments, meaning delegates can dip in and out of the course as and when their schedule allows. There is only one, two-day external placement, so the majority of assignments can be done within your setting, which carries the additional benefit that positive changes can be implemented even before the course is completed. We believe this offers a uniquely flexible qualification that has a minimal impact on the delegate’s work and home life, and in turn, a minimal impact on their educational setting.

 

What our NASENCO delegates say about our cours

Don’t just take our word for it though. See what our delegates think of us below.

In 2020 so far…

  • 98% of our delegates rated Real Training’s NASENCO course as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.
  • 95% rated tutor support as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.
  • 98% rated the extent to which the course met their developmental priorities as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.

“I have enjoyed this course and found it hugely beneficial.”Bridget Marshall

“This course has been made to support busy SENCos and professionals, with the understanding that learning can be done smoothly and concisely through the role.”Julia Findlay

“An amazing course. I loved how accessible it was. I could work in the evenings/ weekends/ holidays etc. It fitted around my workload easily as there are no formal deadlines apart from the one a year on from when you start. As everyone’s workloads are different this is ideal. There were no university visits so no time off of work. The website was easy to use and navigate around. My Tutor was fantastic, and always available for support. I would really recommend booking a course with Real Training.”Laura Phillips

 

Our September cohort closes on 18 September

If you have someone in your setting for whom you believe the NASENCO qualification is relevant, all they need to do is complete our online booking form by 5pm on Friday 18 September to be included in our September cohort. We don’t require payment at the time of booking; to start this month, we simply require completed application forms and an initial payment by the end of the month.

If you have any questions regarding the course and eligibility for staff members, please don’t hesitate to contact us either by email at info@realgroup.co.uk or by phone on +44 (0) 1273 35 80 80.

iSENCO – Ensure your international learning environment’s SEN Provision is prepared for the new academic year with Real Training

Ensure your learning environment’s SEN Provision is prepared for the new academic year with Real Training

This coming academic year promises to bring with it challenges that are unprecedented in modern times across the world. Pupils returning to their educational settings will be experiencing a mixture of excitement, anxiety, confusion and relief as things return to an albeit amended version of normal. According to numerous news reports, pupils with special educational needs have suffered more than most during the lockdown, and it has never been so important to ensure that SEN provisions are in place and ready to fire on all cylinders.

If your setting has aspiring SENCOs who want to take the next step in their career with the International Award for SEN Coordination (iSENCO) qualification, you’ve just recruited to the role, or if your existing SENCO wishes to update their skills and knowledge, then Real Training has the perfect solution, wherever you are based.

 

Real Training’s iSENCO course – Fully-supported distance learning, tailored to international needs

The requirement of the National Award for SEN Coordination (NASENCO) to have Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) or Qualified Teacher Learning & Skills (QTLS) status can be a hurdle to gaining the skills and knowledge the course affords. In addition, the NASENCO course focuses on UK-based legislation which isn’t always directly relevant to international settings.

This is why Real Training has developed the International Award for SEN Coordination (iSENCO). We took the time to consult with international schools and experts to tailor the course to meet the needs of those working in an international setting. As a result, iSENCO encompasses localised legislative frameworks, the impact on learning of third culture kids, the intersection of academic vs social language in EAL students and much more. For this reason, iSENCO is a much more relevant course to those working in an international setting. Crucially for many of our delegates, there is no requirement to hold QTS or QTLS status to enrol on this course, opening up the opportunity to develop skills and knowledge in SEN to more educators.

In addition, with the exception of the course end date, there are no internal deadlines for course assignments, meaning delegates can dip in and out of the course as and when their schedule allows. If your setting is a multi-level school, then all of the assignments can be done within your setting, which carries the additional benefit that positive changes can be implemented even before the course is completed. We believe this offers a uniquely flexible qualification that has a minimal impact on the delegate’s work and home life, and in turn, a minimal impact on their educational setting.

 

What our iSENCO delegates say about our course

Don’t just take our word for it though. See what our delegates think of us below.

In 2020 so far…

  • 100% of our delegates rated Real Training’s iSENCO course as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.
  • 100% rated Campus Online as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.
  • 92% rated the extent to which the course met their developmental priorities as ‘good’ or ‘very good’.

“Excellent guidance from the team in terms of alternative projects when lockdown was instituted.The combination of theory, research and practical application is invaluable in gaining insight into SEN and inclusive practices. I think there is a healthy balance between theory and practical application, which was extremely important for me as I needed both aspects.”Florina Froneman-Gerber

“For the first time I actually understand what I am aiming for in my job. All the practical tasks were applied in reality and really helped. The depth of understanding and a sense of what my job is supposed to be empowered me and transformed the way I carry out my job. It is the first training I have done which actually trains you for the job you do. Definitely do it. It’s the best course I have ever taken and I have completed a degree, Masters, a Grad Dip, an AMBDA, a PGCE, and now this!”Sarah Brown

 

Our September cohort closes on 18 September

If you have someone in your setting for whom you believe the iSENCO qualification is relevant, all they need to do is complete our online booking form by 5pm on Friday 18 September to be included in our September cohort. We don’t require payment at the time of booking; to start this month, we simply require completed application forms and an initial payment by the end of the month.

If you have any questions regarding the course and eligibility for staff members, please don’t hesitate to contact us either by email at info@realgroup.co.uk or by phone on +44 (0) 1273 35 80 80.