UCL ECF Consortium: reflections on a year to remember

25.06.2021 - UCL ECF Consortium: reflections on a year to remember

NETSP is a partnership which was set up by the first teaching schools in the NE and Newcastle University’s North Leadership Centre, initially to deliver the first NPQH programmes. Its ethos has always been to support high quality professional development for the region, by the region’s best practitioners. This founding principle informed the decision to join the UCL Consortium to deliver the ECF, and we are so pleased and proud that we did. 

As Programme Director I have had the huge privilege of being involved in the whole process, from governance and programme development, to recruitment and training of facilitators. I have seen pretty much all aspects of delivery taking place aside from mentor meetings, and I have heard time and again how much teachers have valued the programme and how much it has aided professional dialogue and development in this most difficult of years. I have observed facilitators skilfully steer discussions with ECTs to develop their understanding of effective pedagogy, and I have listened to really thoughtful exchanges between mentors about the process of supporting an ECT who has had very little classroom practice as a result of training in a pandemic.

Most of all I have seen the joy of teachers loving their job, of experienced practitioners sharing their wisdom, of the fulfilment that comes from knowing that this is really important work and it is being done well. Many of our facilitators have reflected on how much they would have liked this sort of programme at the start of their careers (me too!), and they are clearly still learning and relishing having accessible resources both in the framework and in the programme itself. I have been astonished at the energy with which they have approached their role, and the enthusiasm with which they have taken on yet another responsibility and commitment, and it has made me so proud to be part of this exceptional team. I know my colleagues in the other early roll out areas have had similar experiences, and I really hope the message is shared loud and proud that this is a profession which is embracing new learning and nurturing new talent.