One of the highlights of my academic year is always the opportunity to host a #ukfechat or two on Twitter. This week on Thursday evening I did just that, ably assisted by several other members of the #APConnect FE community. Our theme was how an individual practitioners’ values impact on their professional practice in FE teaching.
We covered really wide range of topics including how we align our practice with our values, how we can seek out those who share our values and how we might interrogate and challenge the values that we hold.
It was absolutely inspiring to be joined by so many other FE educators – and in just one short hour we had over 300 contributors to the chat. It was really pleasing to note that the dialogue continued on for the next 24 hours with other teachers who weren’t able to be with us on the night coming along to join in and respond to posts later the following day.
Normally I’d be going into detail in the blog here on the themes that emerged. Suffice to say that the majority of participating educators identified social purpose education as a core value and also the need to look beyond the individual learner to recognise the impact of FE on their family and the wider community.
Key themes were they need to promote self-empowerment in learners so that they were able to exercise agency in the learning and wider lives and also the need to advocate for an anti-competitive FE sector where individual practitioners and providers can collaborate freely in an atmosphere of trust, working together for mutual benefit.
Normally I’d be undertaking a more lengthy analysis of the chat here on the blog but of late I’ve been using the Wakelet curation tool. This brilliant digital tool allows us to curate any digital sources (such as a # on Twitter over a period of time). We can bring them together on a ‘board’ so that participants – and those who we’re not able to be there – can view the dialogue or event as a whole and decide what meaning and themes they derive from it.
As there’s a brand new Wakelet that covers the amazing #ukfechat dialogues around values in FE practice right here, I’ll leave you to do exactly that!