So, farewell to the Learning and Skills Improvement Service which ceased trading at the end of July. The sustainability part of LSIS was always strong thanks to the steady guiding hand of Conrad Benefield, the LSIS Sustainability Programme Development Manager since 2010.
At the end of its life, there was a flurry of outputs under the heading: Sustainability in learning and skills: a legacy of knowledge which comprises "three research reports on sustainability which set out to inform and serve FE and skills sector learning providers as they look to embed sustainability skills and ESD in their learning provision, building on the support and resources that LSIS has offered over the last three years". As Conrad said:
“In their way, each of the reports is a testament to the commitment and achievement of the sector in getting to grips with sustainability and sustainable development. They reflect the depth and breadth of effective practice in the sector, the enthusiasm and commitment of sustainability leaders and champions, and the contribution that the sector can continue to make to sustainable economic growth and sustainable communities.
We encourage our strategic partners in the sector to consider how the learning from these reports can best be taken forward. But more importantly, leaders, teachers and other practitioners across the sector can usefully learn from the findings in these reports and the learning and practice that they present. These reports add to the range of sustainability resources already available to the sector on the LSIS Excellence Gateway, which include the Sustaining Our Future Framework, the Reaching Forward Index and case studies and resources from more than 50 sector-led projects.”
The three reports are:
- Embedding Sustainability in Teaching Learning and Curriculum: This project aimed to explore the relevance of sustainability to education and training; to identify the specific skills and knowledge that teaching staff require to embed sustainability; and to identify barriers, challenges and solutions.
- Sustainability Skills for Growth: This project aimed to explore sustainability skills, their relevance to employment, employers and business, and the opportunities challenges and barriers to the FE and skills sector in leading the development of those skills.
- Springboards to Sustainability: This project assessed the impact of the 13 projects completed in the 2012-13 round of the LSIS Stepping Up in Sustainability Fund, as well as the key ingredients for success that could inform others looking to take forward similar projects.
I have tried to download these three times now, and it works – after a fashion. But what I get looks like a government censor's black marker pen has been at them with a vengeance – redactions, redactions, all is redactions. It could be my computer, I suppose. Or it might be official revenge against LSIS for daring to exist.