All posts by Mr Lennie

Employee Review and Development (ERD) Update

The Service and School Improvement Team at Falkirk Council Education Services have been working towards the implementation of the Employee Review and Development (ERD) Process.

Click below to view the PowerPoint presentation:
In the coming months, a number of  ERD information sessions are being held across Sealock House and Camelon Education Centre. These sessions can be booked online via CPD Manager. The sessions will provide Education Services’ Staff with an overview of Employee Review and Development; providing staff with a knowledge and understanding of the background and rationale behind the implementation of ERD for all Education Services’ Staff,  the processes and procedures relating to ERD and the electronic systems in place to support ERD. Staff will be given the opportunity to raise questions and discuss the process during the sessions. Any member of Education Services’ staff wishing to learn more about the ERD Process is invited to attend, subject to the approval of their line manager. 

This short video explains the ERD Process:

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The system to manage the ERD process is currently being piloted through CPD Manager for a small number of staff. If you are not part of the Pilot you can still log on to CPD Manager and under the ERD Menu read the ERD Guidance document. The document explains each step of the process as well as providing links to videos that walk and talk you through the ERD Process. Also included is a glossary of ERD terms for your own reference. Not all teams will be undertaking the ERD process at the same time, but over the next 18 months you will be notified by your Line Manager when this process will begin for you.

We are currently providing support and training to Line Managers in order for them to undertake their role in the ERD Process. This course will be available to book via CPD Manager.

Satisfying the yearning for mobile learning!

Stuart Lennie and Malcolm Wilson of the Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support team have been working to create a Mobile Devices in Falkirk Education Blog.

The blog is designed to support Falkirk Council education establishments in their use of mobile devices in learning and teaching.

Beginning from September 2013, this site will develop to have further materials as work develops in establishments.

Click here to visit the blog: https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/fa/mobiledevices/

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Gateway to CPD now open!

CPD Manager Portal

Stuart Lennie, along with Lynne Lauder and Anne Hutchison of the Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support team have been working to commission and implement a new way for staff to search, request, and record CPD opportunities.

The new CPD Manager Portal is now live for all Falkirk Council Education Services staff, and can be accessed here:

http://falkirk.cpdservice.net

All Falkirk Education Services staff should have received their logins via email by now. If you have not received your email, please contact cpd.educ@falkirk.gov.uk from your Falkirk Council emial address.

Offering a Gateway to CPD

CPD Manager PortalStuart Lennie, along with Lynne Lauder and Anne Hutchison of the Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support team have been working to commission and implement a new way for staff to search, request, and record CPD opportunities.

The new CPD Manager Portal, provided by Gateway, replaces the existing paper based CPD course catalogue and booking system, and will allow Education Services staff to browse and request CPD from anywhere with an Internet connection- either in or out of work. In addition, the system will support the Employee Review and Development process and automate Professional Update for GTCS registered staff.

The Administration Team, made up of Ann Peoples, Fiona Dyson, Elaine Hunter, Kate Hotchkiss, and Jamielee Dickson, are currently processing the courses for next session in time for the launch in August!

At the start of the new session, all Education Services staff will receive an email containing their login for the new portal.

Animated about Curriculum for Excellence

Stuart Lennie, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support team, has created a short animation to explain the key concepts of Curriculum for Excellence to Parents.

The animation, scripted by Carol Paton of the Curriculum Support Team and voiced by St Bernadette’s Primary pupil Rosie Wallace, explains the key changes to the curriculum and how we are implementing them in Falkirk Council education establishments.

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The Tireless work towards Wireless

 

Stuart Lennie, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support team, has been working with ICT Corporate Services to implement Wireless Technology into Education Services establishments. The installations follow many months of work to research and evaluate the best solution, with small scale pilots being undertaken in both Primary and Secondary schools.

The chosen solution, using Cisco Wireless Access points, provides fast and reliable Internet connectivity throughout the school. This means that Council ICT mobile devices, such as laptops, can be used at the point of learning, rather than the pupils moving around the school to access ICT. At the moment the solution is being deployed across all Secondary establishments, but by the new session work will have begun to progress installations in Primary schools too.

One added benefit of the solution is the additional provision of guest access for personal devices- which could be a laptop, tablet, phone, or media player. This access, often referred to as BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) or BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology) allows staff and pupils to connect to the wireless network using their existing username and password, providing them with filtered and secure Internet access in the school building.

Currently a small scale pilot is underway in Denny High school to allow pupils in two Senior Phase classes to receive this access on their personal devices. This work will allow for the development of policies and guidance documentation, as well as starting to build good practice in safe mobile device use in schools.

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CPD TV

Stuart Lennie, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in Falkirk Council Education Services Curriculum Support team, has just launched the official Falkirk Council Education Services YouTube Channel.

The channel, available HERE, will be used to provide CPD opportunities, support, and guidance for education establishments across Falkirk Council. Within the page are links to the other official YouTube channels for Falkirk schools.

The channel also works on the YouTube app for Smartphones and Tablets, giving you access to content whenever you need it.

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Make sure you subscribe to the channel to get all of our latest updates!

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Putting it on Record

Stuart Lennie, ICT Curriculum Development Officer in the Curriculum Support Team of Falkirk Council Education Services, is supporting the introduction of YouTube access for pupils in Falkirk Council classrooms.

YouTube is an online video streaming website that can provide useful knowledge and education content for all stages in schools and nurseries. In addition, users can create content and upload it to the site in order to store it or share knowledge or learning with others.

YouTube has been open to staff in Falkirk Council for many years and has proven to be a vital tool in terms of classroom practice and staff development. It is regularly the top visited site in education establishments and staff now integrate the content into their lesson plans and activities.

Currently, all pupils are blocked from access to the YouTube site, plus any embedded YouTube content in other websites, in Falkirk schools. This decision was taken based on two main factors:

  • The limited bandwidth available to our schools and the demands upon it.
  • The proportion of content deemed unsuitable by staff.

Recent developments in bandwidth improvements and safety filters put us in a position where these two factors no longer apply.

To facilitate such change, a Technologies in the Classroom group has been formed, made up of classroom practitioners from all stages of education in Falkirk Council. This group will have the mandate to call upon advice from appropriate groups of additional individuals including pupils, parents, and partners.

The immediate tasks for this group will be to:

  • Create support materials for staff and pupils
  • Develop methods to educate staff, pupils, and parents on the safe filtering features in Social Media sites and to ensure acceptable use in line with the Acceptable Use Policy and schools’ positive behaviour policies
  • Pilot pupil access with schools
  • Work to gather and analyse evidence of how YouTube is enhancing learning through previously unavailable delivery methods such as Flipped Learning models which enables pupils to bring to the classroom project work and studies undertaken outwith the school.

Here is an example of one of the support videos for teachers, hosted on YouTube:

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In addition, education establishments will be set up with individual YouTube channels to act as an official public repository of content for their establishment.

A Curriculum for Eggsellence!

Egg Incubator
Live Stream of the Egg Incubator

Shieldhill Primary School are eggs-ploring the life cycle of chickens through their Living Eggs Project- and now they’ve become Internet stars with their own live show! The project, following the development and incubation of the eggs through to hatching, is being streamed live over the Internet. The live video stream, facilitated by Stuart Lennie of the Curriculum Support Team, allows the pupils and a worldwide audience to monitor the process via the school website.

The eggs are on the verge of hatching, so pupils and staff are now able to keep “round-the-cluck” surveillance on the eggs from school or at home!

The streaming service is free to use, and can easily be adapted to other projects, so tune in while it’s going “cheep”!

To view the stream, click on: http://www.shieldhill.falkirk.sch.uk/ and click on the “Living Eggs Webcam” link.