In Spring 2015, Worktree delivered WorkOut Facilitator training to career education teachers in five schools in Luton, UK, including both secondary and primary schools. This was a pilot project funded by the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership and Luton Borough Council.
The project involved training and supporting staff in the planning and evaluation of sessions through a series of meetings, phone conversations and emails.
The delivery itself was supported by Worktree over three sessions: first by directly facilitating a session, as a demonstration of the WorkOut method, observed by the teacher; then co-facilitating the second session with the teacher; finally observing and providing feedback on the a session facilitated by the teacher.
The process was adapted to meet the different needs of the participating schools and teachers. In the case of Surrey Street Primary School, one whole day was given over to a series of ‘World of Work’ sessions, based on Worktree’s resource pack, with the guest WorkOut session in the middle of the day.
Overall evaluation showed that significant increases in the employability confidence of the 146 students who completed Before/After questionnaires: 35% increase in ‘I know a lot about different jobs I can do when I’m older’; 25% increase in ‘I feel confident talking to adults I don’t know’; 18% increase in ‘I know what job I want when I’m older’.
More significant for the Facilitator training, participating teachers reported that they had gained confidence in delivering WorkOut sessions and that recruiting and managing the guests was easier than they had expected. Farayi Agbame, Careers Teacher at Barnfield College, said: “I managed to get ten guests for each of my sessions. It was a lot easier than I thought.”
Debbie Hearne of Challney School for Boys said: “It took me roughly 1-2 hours to recruit the guests. I used my Linkedin contacts and asked the school’s facilities manager to invite suppliers. The boys had a fantastic time…by the end of the hour, they were willing to walk up to the guests and ask them questions. You couldn’t teach that in an hour. Now I plan to run WorkOut sessions for all boys in the school.”