F.I.F.E Fife Industry Facilitates Educators
Businesses from across Fife and beyond hosted secondary school teachers recently as part of F.I.F.E – Fife Industry Facilitates Educators.
The initiative was developed in recognition that educators are one of the most important influences on a young person’s career choice but there are challenges bringing the world of work into the classroom.
Sourcing placements relevant to an individual teachers subject and achieving a diverse mix of placements in terms of sector, location and size, is key to the success of the project. Development Officer, Sara Ward said:
“The DYW Fife programme is all about bringing together industry and education. We recognise the important role teachers play in supporting young people make career choices; the better informed they are about industry, the better they can support their pupils.”
80% of teachers go from school to university and then straight into teaching, so they don’t have direct insight into working in industry. The placements provide real world context that exposes teachers to the most up to date industry trends, practices and techniques especially since the COVID-19 pandemic, these can then be brought into lesson planning.
Here’s what some of our participants had to say:
“Meeting the staff and visiting the Foodmek workplace as part of Fife Industry Facilitates Educators was really insightful. Spending the afternoon on the factory floor, speaking to employees and MD Scot Kelly gave me a well-rounded view of the many different roles available. I gained an understanding which I just could not have got from a phone call or looking at their website. The staff were all so generous with their time, it really gave me the reassurance that they will support any pupils who undertake a work placement there. I’m confident Foodmek can really help our students grow and develop their skills. We have already come up with some exciting collaboration ideas and I can’t wait to work with them more.”
– Vicki Birmingham, English Teacher, Madras College
“I was at a placement at Intelligent Growth Solutions in Blairgowrie last Monday. I had an excellent day and Donald Mackenzie, their HR manager had gone to great lengths to ensure we got input from people working in all aspects of the business. My subject specialism is Biology so to be able to see one of the future ways of plant growth and propagation was fascinating. I will definitely incorporate this into my teaching as it fits in particularly well with the National 4 and Higher Biology course content.
“We were able to meet engineers and hear about their different pathways into their current job with the focus being very much on transferrable skills. We also talked to plant scientists and heard how this is an extremely difficult area to recruit for and there are lots of opportunities within this sector. I will definitely be emphasising this to my pupils.”
– Linsey Rose, Balwearie High School
“I went to National Library of Scotland and I loved it! I always wanted to work in a library or museum setting when I was younger but there was not enough information about routes into it. The day was packed with visiting all different departments and learning about different routes into the vast array of routes into working at the NLS.
“It has been useful to hear from an employer as to what they are looking for in employees and how we can equip our pupils best – but also as a teacher it was insightful at the range of resources available as educators. They have something for every department and it definitely is an under used resource.”
– Stephanie Whyte, Kirkcaldy High School