As part of the QQI Core Statutory Quality Assurance Guidelines for all providers (2016), and Sector-Specific Statutory Quality Assurance Guidelines for Education and Training Boards (2017), an external institutional review of Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board’s Further Education and Training Division is taking place in 2020. This is the first review of its kind within the sector. All 16 ETBs across Ireland will be reviewed as standalone corporate entities, with an individual review report produced in respect of each ETB.
This review is pitched at an institutional level, and is about the preparation and publication by ETBs of individual, inclusive, whole-of-organisation self-evaluations of how effectively they assure the quality of teaching, learning, and service activities, particularly focusing on:
- Governance and Management of Quality
- Teaching, Learning, and Assessment
- Self-Evaluation, Monitoring, and Review
TOR – QA Structures
QA Assessment Procedures
AONTAS Learner Forums
Quality Improvement Plans and Reports
Virtual Visit Videos
Quality Teaching & Learning
This video has been prepared for the QAIR Review Team as a virtual visit to 6 selected campuses across Limerick and Clare. It explores the extent of the quality teaching and learning facilities offered to our learners, as well as the significant investment in those facilities. Most of the campuses featured offer multi-provision delivery. A key theme explored in the video is the development of a network of 8 Learning Hubs across the region, a collaborative initiative between AISS, TEL and ILLN support services, combining the use of technology with one-to-one and group learner supports.
Our Information, Recruitment, and Guidance Support Service supports our communities to make informed choices on education, training, career, and employment. This Information Hub is located at our Further Education and Training Centre O’Connell Avenue Campus in Limerick City. The hub is a one-stop-shop for potential learners to enquire about, or apply for, one of our multiple Further Education and Training pathways. This video explores Michael’s story on how he initially got advice from a member of our Information team, was then referred to a member of our Guidance team, before beginning on a PLC pathway.
Our Active Inclusion Support Service provides a broad range of services to support our learners across the region through a single registration process. Learners are provided with the supports required to allow them to fully participate and benefit from the educational opportunities available while participating in a Further Education and Training course. MyMind is a contracted provider of a range of counselling services to our learners. MyMind has over 100 qualified counsellors. Therapists and services are available in 15 different languages. This video explores how learners engage with our Learning Support team and register for counselling.
We support the AONTAS Learner Voice/National Learner Forum initiative, by facilitating learners to attend the annual event. We also facilitated the organisation of regional meetings of the AONTAS National Further Education and Training Learner Forum in 2019 and 2020. The most recent collaboration took place in May 2020 for the AONTAS National Covid-19 Learner Consultation. Over 300 Limerick and Clare FET learners took part in the consultation, accounting for 33.9% of all respondents nationally. Liam and Kevin were participants in the National Forum in 2019 and share their stories in this video. Thanks to AONTAS for providing the content.
Our Enterprise Engagement Support Service engages with a broad range of stakeholders, employers and learners, improving engagement in an ongoing effort to highlight the strategic role of the ETB in skills development in the Mid-West. This is achieved through networking with the Mid-West Regional Skills Forum and multiple Skills Clusters, as well as targeted interventions such as the current Coding Careers for Women initiative. Supported by the Limerick for IT skills cluster, this pilot offers women a pathway into a career in the tech industry by combining a 52-week online Diploma in Software Development with a 3-month work-placement, in partnership with the local tech industry. This video explores the initiative.
Pathways to FET
Our Enterprise Engagement Support Service works in collaboration with our Information, Recruitment, and Guidance Support Service to provide relevant information to our communities on how to access FET. Key activities include networking at career fairs and employer events. It also uses multiple mechanisms to raise awareness of FET in schools e.g. apprenticeships and Women in STEM initiatives, and it promotes pathways from school to FET through large-scale events such as the Mid-West Careers Fair, Limerick for Engineering Showcase, and the Mid-West Apprenticeship and Traineeship Showcase event as part of European Vocational Skills Week. These two videos explore two of these pathway events.
Language, Literacy and Numeracy Integration
All our FET Support Services work in synergy to support the learner journey. Literacy is fundamental to personal fulfillment, active citizenship, social cohesion and employability. Our Core Skills provision is primarily focused on learning outcomes at NFQ Levels 1-3. There is an increasing number of adults seeking foundation literacy, numeracy, and digital skills. Family Learning is a central element of Core Skills delivery. It activates inter-generational transformation and change. ‘Valuing Parents: Linking Policy and Practice’, a two-day Family Learning Conference organised by the Further Education and Training Division took place in Ennis, County Clare, in March 2019. Delegates from seven countries attended, including Ireland, Germany, England, Sweden, Italy, Luxembourg and Finland. The conference brought together practitioners, experts, researchers, policymakers, educators and Family Learning advocates to share and discuss innovative strategies and contemporary efforts to connect with and engage both child and parent/carer with learning and personal growth. This video provides the highlights of the event. You can watch presentations from the conference here.