08 Oct Modern Governor module spotlight: SMSC Development
From today Modern Governor subscribers can enrol and begin to work their way through the new module on Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural aspects of education. The module is being launched at the National Co-ordinators of Governor Services conference, and if you’re a governor then this module has been written not only to inform you about how SMSC might impact on your strategic role, but also to encourage you to think about the purpose of education.
The module’s structure
Here’s an overview of how the module is structured:
- The nature and importance of SMSC – tools to help you and your fellow governors identify what your school understands by SMSC development;
- SMSC in practice – exploring the enablers and obstacles to providing effective SMSC;
- SMSC and Ofsted – understanding what Ofsted means by SMSC and what it is looking for on and before inspection;
- SMSC and British Values – this section explores what Ofsted means by British Values and the relationship between this and SMSC;
- The governor role in SMSC – considers how governors can support and challenge schools to improve provision for and the impact of SMSC.
Why is governor CPD on SMSC important?
As with all Modern Governor modules, the purpose of the SMSC Development module is to equip an entire governing board with a core understanding of the issues and principles around a particular aspect of governance. This is done so that any discussions we have around SMSC can be done on an informed basis and around a shared understanding of what is meant by the spiritual, moral, social and cultural aspects of education – rather than leaving it to those governors about whom there is a perception that “this the sort of thing that s/he is interested in”.
SMSC can be an easily misunderstood and potentially confusing area, further complicated by its association in many people’s minds with the educational hot potato of collective worship. In a previous post, the module’s contributing author, Bill Moore offers some introductory thoughts on how SMSC might be considered strategic to a school’s development and maintains that, at its core, it is about school improvement – better outcomes for children in both life and academic achievement and a core part of any school’s ethos.
Part of wider governor CPD
Local authorities or trusts who offer Modern Governor as part of their training or development service level agreement can use this module as pre-face to face course material – allowing governance support staff to check if participants have worked through the module as pre-course material, but is generally available for any governor to enrol on and complete as part of their own personal professional development.
In common with all Modern Governor modules, once they’ve finished governors are able to download a personalised certificate in PDF format as evidence of completion of the module. On request representatives from a local authority, diocese, academy trust or chain, or if required the school’s development governor can easily run an online report showing detailed course enrolment and completion statistics by governors from a school, academy or (with appropriate permissions) across a trust, chain, diocese or local authority.
The module is available to subscribers to the Modern Governor service along with nearly thirty other modules plus all of the already-released and forthcoming Modern Governor Core Skills modules. All new and updated modules are available in a smartphone- and tablet-friendly format and are updated by subject matter experts as appropriate.
Questions for your governing board
(Repeated from the earlier How is SMSC in a school ‘strategic’? post)
- What is our school doing to engage pupils in an exploration of what it means to be British?
- What difference does SMSC make in the classroom? How do we know?
- Is there a senior member of staff leading SMSC and British values? Is this person supported by the headteacher and governors? What CPD does s/he need?
- How does SMSC inform whole school priorities such as learning and teaching, behaviour, safeguarding, pupil voice and staff appointments?
- How does all this improve learning and outcomes for our pupils?