18 Jan

Well, it’s been another busy week here at Medtia Square which ended in a brilliant day out with Mr Bright to discover where we can go next with our Employability strategy! More about that later!

As you may be aware, New Bridge School are due to be visited by Ofsted – quite likely before half term but certainly this term. With this in mind, we have been talking with staff around exactly what we want to showcase when the Ofsted inspectors visit. There are three areas of our work that we will focus on: our outstanding curriculum, our outstanding destinations and our outstanding dashboard assessment model.

As many of you know, I have worked at New Bridge for 12 years now and I am so proud to be a part of such a forward thinking, innovative organisation. We are always one step ahead and move at a lightning pace to ensure that our students have the best possible opportunities to achieve their goals. Our curriculum is destination led, to ensure that all of our students are adequately prepared for their next step in life. Some may panic at the thought of an Ofsted inspection but I say, bring it on! Let’s showcase what we do so well every single day!

Talking of innovation, on Friday Mr Bright, our ICT Advisor, took me to Chester to show me some state of the art equipment that will further enhance our careers and employability strategy. We visited a company called Tenstar Simulation.

Tenstar Simulation offers a wide range of professional machine education simulators divided into three industrial segments – Construction, Transportation and Agriculture. Each machine type has a set of carefully developed excercises, optimised to train the students in areas of maintenance, driving skills, manouvering skills, safety and special handling. Select your simulator segment of interest. You can get an idea of our fun day out from the pictures below..

It was such an incredible experience to drive the machinery in a virtual learning environment. We also tested out the latest Virtual Reality headsets to get a true 360 experience of operating machinery within an industrial setting. We heard many examples of the impact of this equipment and software, from training apprentice machinery operatives in colleges to training prisoners so that they have opportunities to move back into the world of work at the end of their sentence! It’s just amazing and Mr Bright is hoping to secure funds from The Ian Karten Charitable Trust to implement this exciting VR technology. We currently have one student on placement within the building industry and he is our youngest ever student to move into a paid job. This is such a huge industry area with many possibilities and the simulator would offer so many opportunities to test out and prepare for a job within this area. How exciting!!!

Now for more news; this week we had a lovely Facebook review from one of our placement providers, the ‘Clean Plate Kitchen’. Here it is..

We have two students doing work experience with us at the moment. They are both fantastic and lovely to work alongside. Watching a young person grow in confidence and settle into their role within your business is so rewarding. The staff at New Bridge are really well organised, approachable and always on hand to offer support. If you have a business and are considering providing a placement opportunity for a young person please do.

It’s so lovely to get feedback from our employers and once again, if you know any businesses who may wish to work with us, please do get in touch with our work placement co-ordinator Maria Statham based here at Medtia Square.

Now it’s over to our job coach Colin for a quick update on this week’s work..

This has been an intensive week for our Future Finders of Maths and English lessons, Employability sessions, job searching and, of course, attending placements.

In Employability on Monday, our Future Finders have been discussing what students’ goals and aspirations look like and how they are to achieve these while being on the course.

The students have been spending time searching and applying for jobs and traineeships, building an understanding of application forms and the job application processes. Next week we aim to have lots of discussions around professionalism and what this looks like in all aspects.

The students have been busy updating the classrooms and supporting each other putting up new information on displays; this has included Mental Health, Pay and Payslips and updating notice boards with information around the Student Council ‘you said, we did.’

Future Finders students have been attending their placements on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Most of them are continuing placements that were set up before Christmas but we have also we have gained some new employers for the students to access. See our feature from Tara for a more detailed update on one of them.

To finish today’s blog, we’re back to the Clean Plate Kitchen for ‘A Day In The Life…’ brought to you by Tara. Tara currently does 2 different placements with Future Finders and has also altered her timetable – so she works on a Friday – to meet the needs of the new employer that she is working with.

Before the break Tara showed you around her first placement at a café in Shaw. Tara is now working at another café, the Clean Plate Kitchen, so over to you Tara to let us know how you got on in your first day here..

A day in the of Tara 
The Clean Plate Kitchen

I arrive at the Clean Plate Kitchen with my job coach as it is my first day but I am hoping that I will be able to travel here independently from next week as it is so close to Medtia.

I introduced myself to Colette who is the café manager and owner and we started straight away with her going through the Health and Safety procedures for the café..

Once we had gone through all the important information, we then started to work on the Specials Board – writing out all the specials so that the customers know what we have to offer today..

It gets really busy about dinnertime, so I have been busy serving the customers and keeping the café clean and tidy..

Well, it has been a busy but exciting week with starting my new placement. I am looking forward to learning more things next week.

Now time to get home and have a well-earned rest! See you all back at Medtia!!

Have a fantastic weekend,

Daniel
Head of College

You can view our previous blog entries here

Click here for this week’s news from Graham