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Andy Robinson's Blog...

4

Jan

2017

It’s all about social mobility

Andy R new profile pic   

Ministers’ of state come and go and those with a portfolio for education and training are no different.  There are obviously many challenges associated with frequent change of leadership in this way.  A significant one for those of us seeking a change to the value placed on outdoor learning is the emphasis and terminology associated with some of the key outcomes of high quality outdoor learning. 

The increasing focus on ‘character education’ driven by the previous administration appears to be gently fading....or is it?  My experience at a recent forum in Westminster was that though terminology and emphasis may have shifted the desired outcomes remain the same.  It is those desired outcomes of higher levels of educational engagement and attainment, increased employability, commitment to a role in wider society and responsibility for the environment we live in, that also remain key outcomes from well designed and facilitated outdoor learning activity.
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1

Dec

2016

Developing local research hubs

Andy Robinson    A good deal of time and energy over the last few years has gone into seeking to influence national government and policymakers with a view to expanding outdoor learning's impact on U.K. society.  This has seen some tremendous progress in some areas, probably most notably in Scotland with the adoption of the curriculum for excellence and the role Outdoor Learning plays in this.

There continues to be a significant amount of effort directed towards drawing on research to influence policy and certainly much research funding relating to the outdoors has been spent in support of this.  More recently though I believe there is an increasing recognition of the need to strengthen the 'third leg of the research, policy & practice stool'.  A recognition that there is a very real need to identify and develop the use of good practice in a growing use of outdoor learning.  The Natural Connections project has been probably the most significant indicator of this changing emphasis.

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19

Sep

2016

It’s all about your team...

Andy Robinson    There is no doubt that what is often called the ‘war for talent’ is becoming harder in the outdoor learning sector. With changing business models, a general push towards healthy lifestyles, expanding initiatives such as the National Citizen Service and a number of other factors I suggest that ensuring you are able to deliver the right outdoor learning services at the right time is becoming more challenging. It is certainly worth considering the way you engage with potential new members of your team.

Whilst the Institute continues to provide the hugely popular jobs pages on its website, this is of course only a part of the story. What does the journey look like for someone considering joining you and your organisation? How well informed are they about the content of the roles you want to fill? Are they aware of where they are in the recruitment process, at any given time? Do they get supportive constructive feedback if they are unsuccessful? How are they made to feel over the first few days and weeks as a new joiner? ....and how do they engage with you in the first place?

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