As manager of a VET organisation, you are responsible for making the organisation fit for the future and for implementing the standards set by society. These requirements include inclusion as an objective for the education system in general and for educational organisations at all levels, including vocational education and training. In many cases, inclusion is already successfully implemented at classroom level, but inclusion can only succeed entirely if the whole organisation is geared towards it. EICON has therefore developed tools that implement a whole-school approach, using ICT for its implementation. The aim of using these tools is to enable a VET organisation to achieve greater inclusion capacity.
If you see yourself as the change agent in your organisation, you can use the five tools below as part of a change process. However, it often is advisable to have this change process moderated by a third party, either an internal employee with organisational development skills or an external specialist. If you hand over the task of process moderation to such a facilitator, the fifth tool in the subject area of Leadership remains the only tool you should definitely work on on your own. The tools 1 to 4 can then be transferred to the role of the facilitator (see corresponding facilitator role).
The tools available are implemented as lists of inclusion opportunities. Ideally, these lists are reviewed and discussed in a team consisting of you and representatives of your staff, e.g. teachers, administrative staff or IT staff. The composition of the group should ensure diversity of perspectives. You could invite this team e.g. for a series of five workshops, each of them focusing on one of the tools below. In each workshop, you would go through one list of opportunities and select challenging, inspiring or promising ideas from it. For the fifth list on leadership, you may consider looking for peers in other VET organisations in your network. Peer-learning in this area might be particularly helpful.
This first opportunities list explores the potentials of ICT towards inclusive pedagogy and innovative teaching and learning approaches. Make sure to involve (all) teaching staff when using this list. For some aspects, the involvement of the learners' view might contribute to further improve the results.
This second list is devoted to technologies and infrastructure and examines the extent to which external policies or internal regulations promote or hinder the use of these technologies in terms of inclusion. Other staff from the management, administration and IT managers should be represented in the group.
The focus of the third opportunities list is on the link that VET needs to establish and to maintain to employment and the labour market. Consider involving also externals in this group, for instance employers or labour market representatives.
This fourth opportunities list explores links between your organization and its surrounding world, particularly on how to involve other stakeholders for collaboration and partnerships. Again, consider the involvement of externals as to make sure that these links are built and maintained in such a way that it suits these externals.
This fifth list of opportunities is particularly focusing of your key task within the organisation. Opportunities towards effective leadership will be explored as this is known to be a particularly powerful factor for successful inclusive education. Here it can be useful to liaise with other managers of VET organisations and support each other as peers.