Benefits of building community engagement in BTEC Workskills Level 1 and 2 | May 2023
Hello and welcome to the L1 and below blog for May 2023. Each month these blogs will feature guidance and tips to support teachers in delivering our qualifications.
Learner experience of BTEC Workskills
This month the blog will be looking at the way in which centres can build community engagement in order to enhance the delivery of and learners experience of the BTEC Workskillls qualification offered by Pearson.
As schools and colleges strive to create well-rounded students who are equipped with valuable skills to succeed in the workforce in the future, engaging community partners can be an effective way to enhance your BTEC Workskills curriculum.
Community partnerships offer schools, training providers and colleges access to specialized knowledge, resources, and networks that can further enrich the teaching of the BTEC Workskills qualification.
In this blog, we explore the benefits of community engagement and provide recommendations on how to identify and engage potential partners.
Benefits of Community Engagement
Collaborating with community partners offers a wide range of benefits to schools, training providers and colleges that can positively impact your students.
Here are some key advantages:
- Enhanced Learning Experience: When local organisations work with educational institutions, they can contribute real-world experiences and invaluable insights into their respective fields. This can thereby enhance the learning experience for students and allows students to view learning from a real-life context, creating more relevance and meaning for them. This then allows them to go on to secure a stronger understanding of the topic taught.
- Networking Opportunities: Community engagement also provides networking opportunities for students, which can lead to internships or job opportunities in the future which can be valuable for some learners who might not have the confidence to otherwise approach such companies.
- Improved Employment Outcomes: By facilitating direct links between industry and education sectors, community partnership programs may help students develop practical skills that are highly sought after by employers, especially if selecting one of the BTEC Workskills units on work experience. This leads to greater outcomes for students as they develop relevant and transferable skills they can use in the future.
- Diverse Perspectives: Collaboration with a diverse group of local business can help institutions broaden their perspective and create more inclusive learning environments for learners who might otherwise potentially disengage from learning. A focus on skills supported by local businesses often is more likely to engage and sustain learner interest.
Identifying and Engaging Community Partners
Here are some suggestions for identifying and engaging partners to work collaboratively with your centre.
- Identify Potential Partners: Look for local businesses who might be able to offer value to the Workskills qualification by researching local businesses or non-profit organizations in the local area. Make a list of potential partners based on their industry, available resources and their relevance to the course you are looking to build.
- Reach Out: Once you have identified potential partners, it is time to reach out to them. You might look to contact them directly or via email or social media channels to introduce yourself and the school/college and your role within it. Be sure to explain how working together could benefit your students, and the impact it can have on their business or organization as well as your own centre. Local businesses are usually quite open to building relationships with local educational institutions.
- Build Relationships: A long-term relationship with local businesses is crucial to the success of developing and strengthening your Workskills course in the longer term. Therefore, it is vital to build a relationship with them. Depending on time you could either schedule regular meetings, brainstorm ideas or plan events together by using some of the units in Workskills, for example Unit 18. This will allow you to evaluate the effectiveness of the relationship to students learning and develop future plans accordingly in order to strengthen the programme future..
- Evaluate and Adapt: Finally, remember to evaluate the effectiveness of working with local businesses regularly, making changes where necessary. By understanding what works and what doesn't, you can make adjustments to the programme and ensure its continued success with students.
In conclusion, community partnerships with local businesses can bring significant benefits to schools, training providers and colleges looking to enhance their BTEC Workskills curriculum. By identifying potential partners, building relationships, and evaluating the effectiveness of the BTEC Workskills program, educational institutions can create a collaborative approach to learning that benefits both students and community partners alike, leading to greater benefits to learners as they approach adulthood.
If you are looking for more support on the Workskills qualification at Entry Level, Level 1 or 2 please do get in touch either by contacting the Pearson help desk or joining our Facebook group page. Pearson BTEC Level 1 and below Facebook Group | Facebook
Kelly Adams - Product Manager Level 1 and Below, BTEC Workskills and BTEC Personal Growth and Wellbeing.