An Interview with Bobbie Carter: The Learning Foundry Puts Learners and Staff First | News

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An Interview with Bobbie Carter: The Learning Foundry Puts Learners and Staff First

It has been unexplored territory for the City of Liverpool, the North West and the UK in its entirety over the last week! While the Coronavirus (Covid-19) continues to challenge small and large organisations alike, The Learning Foundry has made it a priority to adjust to meet the new needs of learners and colleagues. We chatted with Bobbie Carter, ILM Leadership and Management Tutor and Business Assessor to find out exactly how The Learning Foundry has swiftly responded and adapted when faced with this most unlikely of adversaries:


1. When did you learn that Coronavirus (Covid-19) meant the closure of The Learning Foundry campus to the public?

We were notified on Tuesday 17th March that as of Wednesday 18th March The Learning Foundry campus would be closed to the public, colleagues were to work from home and that all classroom and work-based learning and training would be delivered remotely and online for the foreseeable future.

While everyone was sad at the closure of our amazing campus, we understood it had to be done to protect the health of our learners, colleagues and the wider community and we vowed to do our utmost for our learners when working from home!


2. How has The Learning Foundry adapted to these changes?

The availability and use of technology has assisted us greatly!  Microsoft Teams is being used as our main communication and engagement channel across the team, with the sharing of information and just as a general keeping in touch mechanism.  We have also used Teams to video call each other, be that for planned meetings or for quick clarification, guidance and ideas.

Our learners are being contacted remotely, with frequent telephone contact. Again, video conferencing has been great for learners who have this facility. Coursework is being set for and received from learners via e-mails and online learning platforms.  We have also made laptops available to learners who did not have a dedicated laptop to work on at home.

We want to ensure that our learners are fully supported from a mental health, wellbeing and learning perspective and our experienced Tutors are on hand to offer additional support and guidance during this challenging time.


3. What do you feel are the benefits of learners learning from home?

Depending on personal home circumstances and care needs of dependants, some learners are finding the ability to concentrate on their coursework uninterrupted from home to be of benefit.

We also have Google Classrooms, dedicated learning resources are available with videos, blogs and interactive learning material being shared with learners. There are so many opportunities for current learners to continue to develop, achieve and grow at The Learning Foundry right now despite the current climate!


4. As an ILM Leadership and Management Tutor, have you seen any benefits or had any positive feedback from ILM learners since moving to distance learning?

It has brought about many challenges for managers for whom different approaches and ways of thinking and working have been required, in addition to the style of leadership they will need to deploy to continue to motivate their teams during difficult and challenging circumstances.  All of this will provide excellent opportunity to offer strong coursework evidence and a wealth of situations to be more self-aware of their leadership and management abilities.


5. How have you personally found working from home?

The technology available has been instrumental in allowing me to carry on and engage with learners.

For example, prior to working from home, I had scheduled a sign-up event to take place this week for new learners to sign up to the Leadership and Management qualification.  I am able to continue to carry this out remotely, as some individuals who are also confined to home are seeing this as a perfect time to start their qualification. 


6. What are the plans for The Learning Foundry moving forward during the current situation?

The Learning Foundry management team continue to oversee and respond accordingly to updated Government information and communicate with the whole team daily.  We have started to work on a planned schedule for remote learning over a sustained period, in case this is required.  We remain committed to delivering the highest standards of service to all of our learners in a safe and supported environment. 

I envisage that plans and what we are required to work on may change daily, and that is understandable given the current evolving situation. What is assisting this is the regular communications taking place and the honesty from the management team that, what we are being asked to work on as a priority today, may not be required tomorrow. The Learning Foundry is emphasising that ‘no one is alone’ and ‘we are all in this together’.


Call 0300 123 8088 if you’d like to learn more about future courses and opportunities at The Learning Foundry! You can find our website here and we can be reached via social media as per the below: - Facebook - Twitter – LinkedIn

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