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The Importance of Quality within Education and Theories behind the Quality Models.

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The Importance of Quality within Education and Theories behind the Quality Models Introduction The FEFC1 first highlighted the lack of quality assurance within education in its first annual report in 1992. Within the report this issue was perceived as a weakness within the educational system. Quality assurance and management systems were already in-place within industry such as the BS5750/ISO9000 and the FEFC1 felt that education should also adopt a similar system. Due to the different structures and culture within education and training organisations, it was felt that the BS5750/ISO9000 system should be seen as only the framework for quality assurance, to enable education to implement their own system by using its main features. The purposes of a Quality Framework then were to build upon the following sections:- > Quality is only meaningful in the context of the colleges' strategic aims and objectives. > The organisation must learn from the experience and feed this back into the process. > In keeping with the philosophy of TQM the framework must involve staff at all levels in determining, measuring and judging quality. Empowerment and ownership are key features of TQM. > It must meet the needs of vocational education. The delivery of learning to student (the learning opportunity) must be the central focus of the framework. > The framework must address all the stages within the learners' career-path, the entry and exit stages as well as the learning process. > It must address both the 'hard' issues of accountability implicit in the further education service. > Mechanisms must be in place to ensure improvements take place. > The framework must meet the requirements of the main paymaster, the FEFC1 (now LSC2), which has laid out detailed quality requirements. > It should be capable of being extended to link with an external certification process such as BS5750/ISO9000, IIP and the European Quality Award (EFQM9). (Cert Ed handout A Knevett, Oct98, Pg 2) ...read more.


Organisations Results are what it achieves; this includes the level of satisfaction in the organisation's employees and customers, its impact on the wider community and key performance indicators. The benefits of the model are self assessment through: * Identification of strengths and areas for improvement * Identification of priority areas to address * Year-on-year assessment of performance against a widely recognised model * Provides a framework which makes sense of all quality and improvement activities * Generates fresh motivation for improvement * Gives an insight into world class practice * Enables comparison with a wide range of other organisations. The ? Colleges Quality Assurance Procedures have been based upon this model. The Procedures look and all the "Enablers", the mission statement the responsibilities of the leadership, people involved, Policies and their strategy, Partnerships and resources and the processes in place to monitor this. Another impact on the provisions of the college are the results that are monitored fully through data via the college Management system (MIS) and then mapped against national benchmarks, thus ensuring that the college is maintaining a high standard. Where requirement have not been achieved then this is investigated and analysed in the form of the course co-ordinations having to explain why the standards have not been achieved. All the above are looked at within the ? College Quality Assurance Procedures, which have been outlined in appendix 2. These policies look at how the organisation conducts it's self, how it manages staff and resources, how it plans strategies and how it reviews and monitors key processes. It also outlines procedures regarding the monitoring of the organisations results, such as its achievements, including the level of satisfaction in the organisation's employees and customers, its impact on the wider community and key performance indicators. ISO10 9000 "ISO 9000 is a tool to help organisations ensure that their processes are managed to enable them to meet customers' needs and expectations and any related statutory and regulatory requirements." ...read more.


Other codes of practice are also involved with quality for courses such as GNVQ and NVQ procedures which are normally governed by QCA and the common accord, which ensure standardisation covering:- * Centre approval procedures * Assessment and awarding processes * Arraignments for special needs requirements * Malpractice * Enquiries and appeals Different publications regarding standards and codes of practices are available from the QCA website. It is felt that by achieving a recognised quality accreditation, this would enhance the organisations position within the marketplace as prospective customers assume that the service and goods supplied are of quality. In some cases this could be argued against as systems can be put into, place but if they are not followed and adhered to by all, then that is when quality fails. Therefore it is important that the college have developed an "Audit Plan" in order to ensure that these procedures are adhered to and followed at all times. On occasions mistakes and errors are made and this is where improvement can be implemented to ensure reoccurrences do not take place. It is important to ensure that all staff is made aware of quality procedures as sometimes these are overlooked by members of staff who are just casual or part-time. A disadvantage of the college is that most of its staff's development, especially regarding training is done during the day when most part-time or bank staff are unable to attend. If the college is to achieve TQM8 then this is one issue which will need to be looked at and addressed. 1 Further Education Funding Council 2 Learning Skills Council 3 British Standards 4 Observation Teaching and Learning 5 Annual Course Report 6 Students Perception on College 7 Adult Learning Inspectorates 8 Total Quality Management 9 European Foundation for Quality Management 10 International Organisation for Standardisation 11 Investors in People 12 Training Enterprise Council 13 Employees Perception of College 14 Office for Standards in Education 1 1 ...read more.

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