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AoC Sport in the Curriculum Conference – key takeaways

The recent Association of Colleges (AoC) Sport in the Curriculum Conference was a great opportunity to find out more about the key topics within the sport sector in colleges.

The well-attended event was attended by colleagues from colleges across the country, as well as those from both the education and sports sectors.

Sessions on the day included:

  • Sport’s contribution to the wider personal development agenda
  • An insight into Ofsted inspections
  • Improving exam results in PE classrooms
  • Awarding Organisation round table discussion

We’ve put together a quick overview of the key points of some of the sessions, including the keynote session and the employer panel.

Session overview: keynote session

The day kicked off with a keynote session, hosted by Dr. Richard Benyon, HMI Specialist Advisor, Further Education and Skills, at Ofsted.

Richard touched on a range of topics from the Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) to the Education Inspection Framework (EIF), in particular the undeniable importance of curriculum in the EIF to ensure schools and colleges successfully meet Ofsted requirements in light of ‘deep dives’ being adopted as part of inspections.

The term deep dive has been met with some caution by those working in the sector, but what does it mean?

Richard explained that lead Ofsted inspectors will now select subjects or areas to focus on during inspections and look in-depth at how curriculum is selected, delivered and assessed. Inspectors spend most of their time in the learning environments and it’s important to remember that lead inspectors may refocus deep dive areas during an inspection.

Intent, implementation, impact

According to Ofsted, the aim of the deep dive is to allow inspectors to gather the evidence necessary to form an accurate evaluation of how education flows from intention to implementation to impact.

For the purpose of Ofsted inspections, a deep dive will involve looking at the 3 Is – intent, implementation and impact. 

In other words:

  • what does the curriculum intend to do?
  • how will it be implemented?
  • how will it support learner outcomes?

These questions and the intent, implementation and impact theory will be key in helping to prepare for successful inspections.

Curriculum design

Richard continued by highlighting the need for a much more thoughtful curriculum design and the real need to drive forward knowledge and skills development within the education sector, to ensure learner successes for the future. He also highlighted that key factors to consider in this are behaviour and attitudes, personal development, as well as leadership and management from an institution point of view.

From inspections so far, Richard shared that there is a much greater focus on curriculum, with both curriculum managers and subject leads, as well as learners, being more involved than ever before. There has been a rich range of evidence gathered from the learning environment and Ofsted are pleased with the reliability and strength of the evidence they’ve found so far.

Read more on the new Ofsted framework in our recent blog Tips for teachers – what the new inspection framework means for you.

Session: employer panel

This session was chaired by David Hughes, Chief Executive at the AoC, with panellists Barry Horne, Chief Executive at Activity Alliance; Hannah Crane, Director of Workforce and Employability at StreetGames; Daniel Mayhew, Career Coach at UCFB; and Luke Green, from Leicestershire and Rutland Sport.

Key elements highlighted by the panel included:

The need to understand skills needs on a local level to better support learners.

Providers were encouraged to look at what they’ve done within their community to support engagement. In order to support progression from education to the workplace and ensure the success of students after education, it’s vital that skills needs and skills gaps are understood at a local level, to ensure providers are creating the workforce of tomorrow.

How to engage and support with employability skills and participation 

Delivering training to make lives better, understanding the skills knowledge and behaviours that young people need, and ensuring communication and sessions are planned and delivered around this will increase learner outcomes and future success after education.

Find out how NCFE works collaboratively with a variety of organisations to ensure qualifications are fit for purpose.

The need to communicate with employers to make sure they’re on board.

This is an extension of the points above. Employers need to be consulted and involved when curriculum planning, to ensure the curriculum meets local needs and that providers are creating students that are employable within their local area when they are ready to enter the work place.

Final thought…

The day was very informative and gave delegates a great opportunity to network, as well as posing thought-provoking questions that can be taken away and carefully considered, not only by providers who are creating robust curriculums for learners, but also for awarding organisations, who want to ensure we continue to create qualifications that are fit for purpose and that provide learners with the best chance of success.

If you didn’t get a chance to speak with us at the event and want to get in touch about how our solutions could work for your college, get in touch by emailing [email protected]

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