February was a busy month for NCGE FET Guidance work.
The underlying theme was collaboration and cooperation and improved understanding of the role for Guidance in the varied landscape and emerging practice of FET both nationally and abroad.
NCGE FET continues to collaborate internally with NCGE Post-Primary and Euroguidance Ireland.
In collaboration with NCGE Post Primary Guidance, NCGE FET has begun considering management and policy developments in several areas, including the areas of -
- Psychometric Testing in Guidance
- Legal considerations (data protection) for Guidance Counsellors and Guidance Information Officers in FET,
- The Guidance role for those where English is not their ‘native’ language, who may speak in other languages at home.
In collaboration with DDLETB ESOL & EAL Development Officer.
Coordination with Euroguidance Ireland:
- upcoming EU (Academia) Study Visit
- developments pertaining to the Eurodesk ‘Time To Move 2020’ events,
- attending a Euroguidance Study Visit in Bonn, Germany with the theme ‘Practical Insights into the German guidance services with the focus on international mobility’
Data Gathering in FET Guidance.
In the ongoing development of the DES and SOLAS approved FET-wide Guidance Management System, in February NCGE reached the conclusion of several challenges and phases.
- February allowed the final signing of NCGE-ETB Interim Agreements for the existing Adult Guidance Management System (AEGS AGMS) thereby guaranteeing the continued GDPR compliance of the AEGS AGMS.
- NCGE FET concluded the final meeting of Phase 1 of the FET GMS Working Group Meeting, with several very useful outcomes.
In agreement with the FET GMS Working Group members, we established a ‘subgroup’ of Adult Education Guidance Service staff to form a smaller group to consider adaptions of the current system during Phase 2 of the development of the FET GMS.
- In order to facilitate the appropriate closing off and archiving of existing AEGS AGMS Data - NCGE contracted Dr. Petra Elftorp to conduct ‘overarching Research on Data Gathered between 2004 - 2019 in the DES/SOLAS/NCGE Adult Guidance Management System of the Adult Educational Guidance Service. The research is expected to conclude at the end of April 2020.
- NCGE FET attended with interest the ‘My Journey, a Distance Travelled Tool’ Introductory Event on 30th January.
This was a Government of Ireland (Department of Rural and Community Development) and Pobal ‘joint initiative’ to develop a ‘soft skills measurement tool’, working with Quality Matters, Trinity College Dublin, and co-created with Local Development Companies.
Along with Govt. Policy makers, DEASP managers, Case Officers, Partnership staff and others we learned about this tool which may have interesting applications in an FET Guidance Context:
- NCGE FET enjoyed a lively and engaging opportunity to deliver a lecture to the MA in Guidance Counselling and Lifespan Development students in University of Limerick.
- A visit to the LCETB Adult Education Guidance & Information Service, and Limerick College of Further Education to meet the Guidance Counsellor there.
- On February 27th a busy month concluded with NCGE FET engagement at the ‘Govt. of Ireland, National Access Plan to Higher Ed. 2015-2021 Annual Stakeholder Forum’.
As a member of the National Advisory Group for the VISKA project in Ireland since 2017, NCGE FET attended the final VISKA Conference in Brussels on February 12th.
The VISKA Project addressed social inclusion for low skilled adults, refugees and migrants by making knowledge, skills and competences of adults visible through the validation of prior learning.
Throughout engagement with this Project, NCGE FET voiced the importance of clarity regarding the role of Guidance in any recognition of prior learning context:
The dissemination event (the conference) included the launch of a Cross-country report (developed by CIT, led by Deirdre Goggin and Professor Irene Sheridan).
We concur with the significant conclusion regarding comprehensiveness:
‘the provision of adequate information and guidance before a decision to undergo validation is taken, throughout the entire validation process, as well as after it’
Supporting European Youth Information and Policy: Eurodesk and Youth Wiki Celebrate
Date: Tuesday 26th May 2020
Location: The Davenport Hotel, 8-10 Merrion Street Lower, Dublin 2
Join Eurodesk Ireland to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Eurodesk in Ireland, exchange good practice with peers, and launch the Youth Wiki platform at this day-long event in support of European Youth Information and Policy.
2020 marks the 25th anniversary of Eurodesk in Ireland. Eurodesk is for young people aged 13 to 30 and those who work with them. It’s a free information service on EU funding and opportunities to work, study, volunteer, travel and be an active citizen in Europe. This event is an opportunity to reflect on the achievements of those who have been involved in Eurodesk over the past 25 years in Ireland, and will pave the way for Eurodesk’s continued role in supporting access to European youth information and mobility opportunities.+
They will also officially launch Youth Wiki in Ireland. Youth Wiki brings together information on European countries' national structures, policies and actions that support young people in an ‘online encyclopedia’. It covers eight main fields of action: education and training; employment and entrepreneurship; health and well-being; participation; voluntary activities; social inclusion; youth and the world; and creativity and culture. Like Eurodesk, Youth Wiki aims to support evidence-based European cooperation in the field of Youth, by providing information in support of young people.
The day will include interviews with Eurodesk multipliers, and young people will share their experiences and stories. We’ll also have a ‘Human Library’ where participants can speak with representatives from organisations supporting youth information, youth mobility and youth policy. Human library themes will include:
- How to become part of the Eurodesk Network
- Connecting with Eurodesk in your area, local inter-agency cooperation
- Volunteering at home and abroad
- Mobility opportunities for young people and Eurodesk network members
- Challenges and solutions in international youth mobility
- Youth Wiki
Eurodesk and Youth Wiki are managed by Léargas and funded in Ireland by the European Commission and Department of Children and Youth Affairs.
Where possible NCGE FET continues to engage with ‘whole of government’ strategy and policy development, including participation on the DCCAE SDG Stakeholder Forum.
NCGE will continue to consider how Guidance can support sustainable development goals as part of lifelong guidance policy and practice development.
Guidelines on Provision of AEGS to 16 – 17 year olds
NCGE wish to remind staff of relevant guidelines on provision of AEGS to 16 – 17 year olds.
In 2014, the Department of Education and Skills requested NCGE to develop Guidelines on the Provision of Adult Educational Guidance Services to 16 and 17 year olds to enhance and support the existing DES AEGI Operational Guidelines 2012.
These Guidelines are intended to support the Adult Educational Guidance Services (AEGS) nationally and were intended to inform AEG Services and their managing agencies - the Education and Training Boards (ETBs).
These Guidelines should continue to inform FET Guidance Staff in the context of ongoing developments in the landscape of FET Guidance provision and the development of GDPR (data protection) legislation.
Since January 2020, NCGE are engaging with legal advice and will make such revisions to these guidelines as may be necessary.
Resource for Self-Care and Mental Health issues for Adult Education Guidance Services
In November 2019 as part of NCGE CPD for AEGI, Dr Marie Rooney delivered a workshop on ‘Supporting the practitioner to support the client: Self-Care and Mental Health issues for Adult Education Guidance Services’.
The resource booklet developed by Dr Rooney for this workshop is now available on the FET Guidance Handbook.