The grant will provide the opportunity to collectively accelerate the development of online blended learning materials by pooling the expertise and resources available from the three educational institutions involved. This will ensure both staff and students benefit almost immediately from the developments, especially useful for those students who may require further help with their studies in order for them to achieve.
The Colleges are also inviting local and regional businesses to contribute to the project, further developing students’ digital knowledge, skills, and confidence in line with employer expectations.
Penny Wycherley, Interim Principal and CEO of Highbury College said, “For some time, blended-learning has provided an exciting and flexible way for students to pursue their studies. It is fantastic how Highbury students and staff have embraced technology during the pandemic, developing their digital skills and growing in confidence along the way. This grant allows us to take our blended-learning to the next level and ensures our students are ready for post-pandemic employment or further study at university. We very much look forward to working with our FE colleagues on this exciting project, building on our existing partnership.”
Andrew Kaye, Principal and CEO of Fareham College, which is leading on this collaborative project said, “We are absolutely delighted to have received this grant from the Department for Education. Due to the COVID-19 lockdown, we had to work very quickly to realign the content of our courses for remote teaching and learning. We were hugely impressed by the positive response from both students and staff using the new blended-learning approach and how well it worked. This money will enable us to maintain a sustainable blended-learning curriculum at Fareham College and embrace new digital technologies to achieve this.
Mike Gaston, CEO and Principal of HSDC, looks forward to working collaboratively with the other two area colleges, “HSDC is delighted to be working in partnership with both Fareham and Highbury Colleges on this project. HSDC prides itself and indeed has been awarded for its use of digital technologies in learning with Google Classrooms, but we also recognise that we must constantly be seeking new ways of working through blended-learning to support our staff and students. I am thrilled that this funded project supports this exciting work.”