Leadership message from Jessica Watts, Head of Improvement Programmes

Jessica Watts NTK

Iā€™m delighted to share some good news with you in our leadership message this week but firstly I do hope that you are all well and that some of you may have managed to have a break whether a staycation or a trip away. We have all had to change plans and adapt to the new and continually updated guidance but it is important that we all do take some time out as we know that we will continue to work in challenging environments for some time to come.

I joined the Trust last year to support the improvement of our education and training ā€“ many of the large team I work with have been working hard for some time now to ensure that we deliver the very best experience to our learners. This is essential to ensure that we can supply the Trust with the right workforce to deliver the very best care to our patients. We want to continue to attract enough clinical students and other critical frontline staff, and to ensure that they receive high quality support and training within a positive culture.

The latest review of the quality of our education has recently been carried out by Health Education England. It included interviews with over 100 learners and educators across the BSc (Hons) Paramedic Science and Diploma in Higher Education Student Paramedic Programme during July and August. Thank you to those of you who participated in these interviews and for the views and feedback you shared.

We have now received the final report and whilst there is still room for improvement, it shows that we have already made good progress. This includes improved education governance with the implementation of processes that allow escalation of education concerns from learner/educator to our Board. An example of good practice noted was our new Learner Group ā€“ any student or leaner can become a member and our learner inbox via which any issues, concerns or feedback can be sent directly to our education team. We will use this feedback to make further direct improvements in our education provision. We were also very pleased to read that overall, the culture of undermining and bullying in training hubs which had previously been reported is no longer an issue, but that there are still some pockets of discriminatory behaviour. We are working hard as a Trust with our staff to make sure that we all live by our Trust values and make all colleagues feel welcomed and supported, particularly those starting out in their careers in the ambulance service.

We will share the full findings with you soon, but overall, we are definitely making progress in providing the learner experience our students expect, which will help attract the future talent we need to join our EEAST family.

Keep well and safe,

Best wishes

Jessica Watts - Head of Improvement Programmes

Published 27th August 2020

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