Competence standards and reasonable adjustments: teaching
Teaching is a competence led profession. Students may achieve the Qualified Teaching Status (QTS) standard either through an undergraduate course or a one year post-graduate course.
Competence standards for QTS are drawn up by the National College for Teaching and Leadership (England), and the General Teaching Councils in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Each agency publishes a code of practice and is responsible for registration.
HEIs are responsible for designing the study programme to address the competences and for ensuring that the curriculum and assessment meets the required standards. The competence standards in the course programme may be expressed as intended learning outcomes, and should provide for multiple forms of assessment.
In setting competence standards, staff from a range of academic departments will need to consider the competence standard requirements under the Equality Act 2010, and anticipatory and individual reasonable adjustments. Primary and secondary schools are likely to have an enhanced role in assessing students, so staff will need to fully understand the requirements.
Many schools of education have a disability liaison representative who is in regular touch with disability services and involved in disability equality issues during course development or re-validation.
‘The disability liaison co-ordinator, who is also a senior lecturer, was involved in the re-validation of the ITT programmes. Revalidation included developing inclusive teaching learning and accessible materials. The role has taken time to embed and develop understanding by staff as to how to use her. She has specified hours for the liaison activities in her work programme.’