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Roles and Responsibilities of a Tutor

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Roles and Responsibilities of a Tutor
It is the role of a teacher to ensure that the learner achieves the qualification that they are working towards and gains relevant skills in a way that fits their learning needs, meets the requirements set by the awarding body, meets the demands of employees, and does so with time and financial efficiency. Within my role I recruit, select and train volunteers in a variety of subjects who then go on to support local families within their own homes. Some of our volunteers choose to get there learning accredited, it is my role to assess this work. Part of my job is to ensure that I carry this out in such a way that keeps my learners actively engaged and motivated. I am responsible for keeping relevant records, tracking their progress and giving appropriate feedback. It is important for me to follow professional values and practice ta all times, being a role model to the volunteers so that they will then represent our organisation’s values when they are out in the families’ homes.

The Teaching and Learning Cycle

For teaching and learning to be effective, all stages of the teaching and learning cycle must be given care and attention and the relevant roles and responsibilities assigned to each stage must be carried out, within necessary boundaries. The cycle has 5 stages – Identifying needs, planning learning, enabling learning, assessing learning and quality assurance and evaluation.

Identifying Needs
Our volunteers all fill out a confidential application form identifying any individual needs and any challenges to learning that they may face. As an organisation we will read these forms and then meet with each individual at a mutually convenient time to carry out an initial assessment. One of the boundaries that we are always sure to abide by is keeping all learner/volunteer information confidential unless permission has been given to disclose it. The information that we gain from the initial assessment will then inform us as to any adaptations that we may need to make to the way in which we deliver our curriculum, the way in which we lay the room out, and the materials that we use. This is done to ensure an inclusive environment, where all learners will be able to reach their full potential and to ensure that we are working to promote equal opportunities and diversity. Part of the information from the initial assessment will help me to determine what level of accreditation the learner is capable of aiming for and whether or not the course is appropriate for them. I have a responsibility to refer learners on to other people or agencies should they need extra support with their studies or if I feel that the course is not appropriate for them. The initial assessment is also plays a vital role in ensuring that the learner knows what is expected of them, it allows learning styles to be identified and can involve and engage the learners, allowing them to play a part in negotiating what level they think they should be studying at. We carry out a CRB check on all volunteers before they are able to start with us, as we are responsible for ensuring the safety of our families.

Planning Learning
Before we embark upon a new training course part of my role is to converse with the other teachers to arrange the practicalities of the course, such as the dates, times, and venues for each session. We discuss course content, and plan in detail how the outcomes, aims and objectives can be covered within an appropriate time frame using appropriate learning resources and activities. We will collectively produce a standardised scheme of work for the 10-week course and individual session plans for each week. As a tutor I am responsible for any updates that are needed to cater for changes in syllabus or qualification specifications. Individual learner needs identified in the initial assessment are taken on board in the planning stage and sessions are adjusted accordingly. Within this planning stage there are certain boundaries that constrain us such as the financial limits we have when selecting resources and the health and safety regulations dictating the equipment that we can use.

Enabling Learning
As part of my trainer job I have many roles to play in enabling the learning of my students. I must communicate clearly and effectively ensuring all my learners understand the information given and know what is expected of them. I must establish sensible ground rules, which I do by involving the whole class in making suggestions as to what is and is not appropriate behaviour in the classroom. I have to maintain a duty of care to each individual, provide the opportunity for learners to use functional skills, give learners a course induction and induction to our organisation, and teach in a way that is both engaging and motivating to my students.

As a charity we hold highly the values of equality and diversity and have adopted policies to ensure that a fair and inclusive environment is provided – motivating all individuals to learn at a high standard. My colleagues and I ensure that the physical needs of our learners are met by keeping the classroom at an adequate temperature and lighting level, and giving sufficient breaks to ensure that learners can absorb all the information. We are also responsible for the emotional needs of our learners and so as well as abiding by our equal opportunities code of conduct we assure no learners are being discriminated against or treated unfairly by other learners. By promoting the physiological and security needs of our learners in this way, we are, in accordance with Maslows Theory (Gravells, 2011), enabling our students to reach higher goals and achieve their full learning potential.

As an organisation we promote positive communication, giving learners phone numbers and email addresses to contact us on if they need further support. Learners are told at the start of each session what the objectives are for that day and how they are relevant to the course as a whole, these will then be recapped at the end of each session to ensure that each learner has acquired the relevant skills and/or knowledge, and if not they will be given further support to reach these. I am responsible as a teacher for being up to date in my knowledge in all areas of course content, attending further training as required, to enable me to deliver a comprehensive course at a high level. I am also responsible for keeping records of attendance, individual learner evaluations of each session, and ensuring accreditation work is completed and recorded. Whilst delivering each session in a friendly and engaging way I must be sure to remain professional, keeping my relationship with students at a professional distance, dressing appropriately and using acceptable language.

Assessing Learning
A teacher’s role within this stage of the teaching and learning cycle involves assessing the progress of individual learners and following awarding organisation and body requirements. Our volunteer preparation course is accredited by the OCN, which ensures that it meets a national standard of assessment. Our organisation is part of a national framework in which each scheme follows the same assessment criteria which is then assessed by a panel of independent markers. All staff involved in the training are responsible for marking a shared distribution of learners’ work, a timetable is set in the planning stages of the course and all trainers are responsible for providing clear, accurate and relevant feedback within this timeframe.

Quality Assurance and Evaluation
It is the role of all teachers to ensure that they evaluate how effective their sessions have been in order to improve methods for next time. At my organisation we ask students to fill out evaluation forms at the end of the course and at the end of each individual session, allowing us as trainers to then assess if the aims and objectives have been met and note any changes that we can make to improve in specific areas of the session plan, or scheme the next time we deliver the course. We evaluate whether our resources need to be changed or updated, and whether we can make any environmentally friendly changes such as printing less information or recycling materials. Whilst taking stock of learner feedback we are conscious of ensuring we do not make any changes unless they will benefit students as a whole and unless they fit with our policies and those policies of the OCN.

Record Keeping

A very important part of a teacher’s role Is record keeping. The records that I am responsible for keeping within my tutoring role include;

* The course application form and initial assessment form – required for maintaining volunteer details such as contact details and individual learning needs, and to assist with equality and diversity records, * CRB documents – required as a part of our organisation’s safeguarding policy. * Evaluation forms – to help with amending future courses to provide the best possible education to our learners * Accident forms – as required by health and safety in the workplace legislation. * Attendance sheets – to track learner progress and provides information to other colleagues. To ensure no learner misses out on achieving their potential.

Records are essential to support the process of teaching and learning and to meet the needs of other professional bodies, which within my organisation includes trustees, regulators, and our national body. They must be accurate, reliable and easy to comprehend. We ensure all of our records are confidential, stored in locked filing cabinets or password secure computers and we only keep learner records for 18months after they have left the organisation, we then shred them. In addition to these measures we keep to all other requirements of the Data Protection Act (1998 amended 2003) ensuring data is only used and obtained for specific lawful purposes, is processed fairly and lawfully, relevant and not excessive.

Legislation

Teachers must follow generic legislation relating to teaching as well as legislation relevant to their subject area, they must also follow any codes of conduct policies specific to their organisation.

Generic legislation that I am required to follow includes; * Children Act (2004): Every Child Matters – this is particularly essential within my line of work as I am responsible for teaching volunteers safeguarding polices that they will need to follow when visiting young families in their own homes. * Code of Professional Practice (2008) – requiring teachers to work with professional integrity, respect, reasonable care, professional practice, criminal offense disclosure, responsibility and to have responsibility during institute investigations. * Data Protection Act (1998 amended 2003) – as previously stated I am as a tutor required to maintain data in accordance to he rules of this Act * Human Rights Act (1998) – making sure all learners are treated as having basic rights laid down by the law. * Race Relations Act (1976 amended 2000) – all learners have the opportunity to embark on the course, and all shall be treated equally regardless of colour, race, nationality or ethnicity.

Within my organisation I am responsible not only for following generic legislation but for abiding by the organisation’ s specific codes of conduct. These include the prohibited use of social network sites at work, an appropriate dress code, and limited use of mobile phones within the workplace.

When planning a scheme or session I must take care to consider the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (1999) – this is to ensure that visual displays and equipment are all set up and used in a way that induced minimal risk.

Equality and Diversity

Equality is about giving all learners the same rights, access to learning and participation opportunities, regardless of their background or personal circumstances. Diversity is the respect of the differences of each learner. As an organisation promoting equality is paramount within our training and as part of our every day life encounters within the workplace and with the families that we support. Diversity is celebrated as a positive part of life and all individuals are treated with dignity and respect. As an employee I am required to follow the rules set out by the Equality Act (2010), not discriminating any of my learners on the basis of age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion, sex or sexual orientation. As part of the organisation that I work for we are all required to adhere to the ‘Equality, Fairness and Diversity Policy’ set by the national body. We also have an ‘equal opportunities policy’ in place.

During my teaching it is my responsibility to be non-judgemental and challenge any behaviours and/or attitudes that others or myself may indulge in that are in anyway prejudiced, biased or could be considered a form of harassment or stereotyping. I cannot favour any learners above others, offend any groups of people or cause anyone any embarrassment by what I do or say or how I conduct myself. As part of our training we encourage learners to think about issues of equality and diversity, to challenge their preconceived impressions of others and to be tolerant of one another. We are also sure to be inclusive of all learners and their individual learning styles, ensuring all their needs are met so that they can participate fully in each lesson, we use materials and resources that represent a variety of ages and ethnicities.

Points of Referral

It is important for me as a teacher to be aware of times when I need to access support for my leaners. Many potential barriers or challenges to learning will have been identified before the course, but some may arise during the course and it is important to know how to deal with these. It will sometimes be necessary to refer the support of students to my line manager, who I meet with regularly to for supervision, and to discuss specific scenarios with my colleagues at team meetings in order to get advice and support to help meet the needs of students. If my line manager or colleagues are unable to offer help or advice I can go to outside agencies for support. There are agencies available to provide further educational support for learners such as student services, financial aid, careers services, learning mentors and disability assessment teams. Sometimes however when trust has been built up in a teacher – student relationship, a student may come to me with confidential issues from outside the realm of education, it is not my responsibility to deal with all of these issues- but to refer them to specialist agencies who can help. Some examples of some of the agencies that I may use include, the Citizens Advice Bureau, The Job Centre, Health Visitors, the Police and transport organisations.

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