Calvin Maye has been coaching children and adult learners for over 15 years and is due to start a new job as a PE teacher at the secondary school he left 21 years ago. He also works in a professional football club as an academy coach.
Tell us how you started working in further education?
I moved into Further Education in 2012 and have been teaching 16+ learners and mentoring tutors. For the past five years I worked for an education provider training new and existing teaching staff on Management Information Systems to enable them to help enhance their learners’ journey to success.
What was your motivation for undertaking QTLS?
My motivation was all down to the passion and job satisfaction that teaching and coaching gives. Being part of someone’s learning journey and seeing them achieve success is such a good feeling. It’s this passion to want to help others to unlock their potential and strive to achieve more that led to my decision to do the same. QTLS has been a fantastic way to take my learning journey forward and benefit others.
What did you like about QTLS?
I liked the structured workbook-style portfolio. The sections were presented in a methodical way enabling me to collate comprehensive evidence to support each section. The support received though questions and answers on the workbook, as well as supporting documents, was comprehensive and helped me whenever I had any questions.
How has it benefited you, and as a result, your learners?
QTLS has helped me to become a wider thinking teacher and coach. I am now more thoughtful when it comes to reflecting actions and ensuring I give my learners input and feedback to empower them to feel they have a hand in shaping and directing their learning journey. This approach has seen my learners feel more motivated, and showing more engagement during training has resulted in targets being met, and ultimately more positive attitudes towards learning.
How has QTLS impacted your career?
QTLS has been great to add to my CV and has opened other possible future career options. This has enabled me to gain employment in my old Secondary school that I left 21 years ago! I am now a full-time Year 7/8/9 PE teacher, delivering core PE lessons as well as various extra curricular sports activities. Whilst currently not looking to immediately move positions, I have seen an increase in contacts on networking social media, so I am positive that if or when I decide a new challenge is right, QTLS will certainly help with my future career prospects.
What impact has it had on your practice and your learners?
The impact has been a positive one with increased motivation and engagement levels. I have also tried new strategies which have proved successful, such as scenario-based learning. This is used to get learners to put newly-gained understanding into practice and gives them ideas and real life examples of putting theory into practice. This has proven successful in stretching and challenging learners of different levels within the same group. I have even added more interactive elements to my teaching, for example getting learners to present back a topic in a certain style such as in the form of a popular game show or TV show. This proved a lot of fun, but at the same time was thought provoking when it came to thinking about the theory and content and how they could relate to the presentation theme.
What impact did QTLS have on your organisation?
The impact of undertaking QTLS has been really positive – tutors have begun to utilise the systems from training sessions and there has been positive feedback from funding providers during audits. As a business there has been the opportunity for the Senior Management Team to analyse and see how learners are progressing and what else we can do to support the tutors and learners to achieve success. I have also been nominated by my peers because of the support and training given to our company Reward & Recognition awards, which is a very pleasing aspect personally.
What have you learned about yourself?
I have learned that QTLS has opened my eyes to bring the reflective practitioner out in my work that I didn’t always notice previously.
What support did you have from your supporter?
My supporter was fantastic, always approachable when it came to discussing ideas, through to more general meetings about how the QTLS process was going. He also provided great feedback from lesson observations and even invited me to observe him and others to assist with my CPD. My colleagues bought into what I was trying to achieve and were very willing to provide constructive feedback into my delivery. This helped me to evaluate and plan ahead for the future.
What do you want to do next and how will you continue to develop your practice?
I want to consolidate and continue to practice the tools QTLS has unlocked and continue to plan my own CPD with a view to progressing my career.
What is your advice to other SET members undertaking QTLS?
I found QTLS daunting at first, but with the support of others and dedicating the time it deserves and the support from the Society for Education and Training (SET), I was able to complete it on time and to a standard that I felt proud of.
Sometimes we neglect ourselves and our own development because of the time dedicated to our learners, so my advice is to embrace QTLS and dedicate the same effort and commitment that we as teachers, trainers and coaches give our learners. QTLS is a fantastic way to not only unlock and enhance your teaching practices, it is a great industry-recognised qualification that will enhance your reputation and career prospects, as well as giving your learners the benefit of your continued dedication to your own development and teaching.