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Title of Paper
Schools Liaison Policy
Author of Paper
Dr Allan Howells (Director of Academic Services)
Type of Paper:
A: Substantive Discussion Item
A: Preliminary Discussion Item
B: Formal Approval Item
C: Formal Recommendation to Council
D: Item for Report
Dates Previously Discussed:
Committee of Senate
Vice Chancellor’s Committee
10 Nov 08
Senate Oct
This policy has been developed following the positive discussion at Senate in October on opportunities for
greater development and coordination of Schools Liaison work at Keele. The proposed policy establishes the
principle of this activity being academic-led, managed by Schools and with oversight by Faculty Deans. The
Directorate of Academic Services will take a coordinating role in this activity, and PVC (Learning and
Teaching) will be the “external public face”. .
This policy paper recognises that implementation will require academic time for this work to be included in the
Workload Allocation Model .
Key risks to be managed:
University reputation / external profile
Student recruitment
Action Required of Senate:
To approve the Policy
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Senate: Checklist of Issues to be Considered in
Respect of all Proposals
Procedural Issues
1. Is further discussion required through the Committee system?
X n/a
2. Will staff and / or students be consulted further before taking forward?
X n/a
Standards Issues
3. Could there be an impact on academic standards?
X n/a
Staff / Student Issues
4. Could there be an impact on employee or student relations?
5. Are there any equal opportunity issues?
Risk / Opportunity Issues
6. Do existing commitments place any constraints on the proposal?
X n/a
7. Could there be an impact on student recruitment?
X Negative
8. Could there be an external or internal PR impact?
X Negative
9. Are there any legal implications?
X n/a
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Directorate of Academic Services
Schools Liaison Policy
Senate November 2008
Aims of Keele’s Schools Liaison Policy
The Keele University Schools Liaison policy supports the promotion of a
coordinated approach to Schools Liaison and encourages the development of
contacts with secondary schools and colleges, by academic and other staff and,
where appropriate, Keele students.
The aims of this liaison activity are:
To support learning and teaching and provide information advice and
guidance (IAG) within the school sector by drawing on the rich academic
resources which the University possesses, recognising that public policies
increasingly encourage and expect Universities to do this
To ensure that Keele’s standing, ethos and distinctive academic programme
are well understood amongst a wide range of schools and colleges, including
those who have many able pupils likely to apply to University, whether in the
state or the independent sector.
To work with the secondary schools sector, in particular, to increase the
progression to higher education of young people who come from lowparticipation backgrounds
To facilitate and support curriculum development in schools, particularly in
STEM subjects, and professional development for teachers.
To ensure appropriate central coordination of the University’s interface with
secondary schools and colleges, leaving maximum flexibility for academic
staff to shape the nature of the activity whilst making it simple for schools to
establish and maintain contact with the University.
Leadership and Management of Schools Liaison
It is intended that Schools Liaison at Keele should, primarily, be academic-led.
Each Faculty should identify ways, suited to its own circumstances, of providing
strategic leadership for schools liaison. Deans are responsible for the
implementation and monitoring of the policy within their Faculties. Every
academic School in the University should have a member of academic and /or
support staff who are responsible for this activity (whose duties might also
include admissions and/or learning and teaching). Schools Liaison work by
academic staff generally is recognised as part of academic citizenship activity
under the terms of the Workload Allocation Model. Suggested Terms of
Reference for those with Schools Liaison responsibilities are given at Annex A.
Schools Liaison activity will be funded centrally where it relates closely to
recruitment and can include discipline- specific work where it is closely related
to recruitment. Schools Liaison work that relates more closely to the promotion
and profile raising of a particular discipline will normally require individual
academic Schools to accept budgetary responsibility.
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At central University level, an experienced academic member of staff is
nominated to support schools liaison activity, to be an external ‘public face’ and
maintain a strategic overview of activity within Faculties. In the first instance this
is the Pro Vice Chancellor (Learning and Teaching).
Central administrative support
Co-ordination of activities is necessary in order to avoid multiple, strategically
uncoordinated and unplanned contact with schools. It is not intended that
Schools Liaison be centrally driven or controlled but central coordination is
needed to support the work being done in academic Schools. The Schools
Liaison coordinating function is located in Academic Services, and its role is to:
be a single, central point of contact for both schools and colleges and
academic staff who wish to develop liaison activity;
develop appropriate website material to reflect the Schools and Colleges
Liaison arrangements;
work with:
ƒ Academic schools
ƒ Recruitment staff, including those who assist from other directorates
ƒ Widening Participation staff
ƒ KUSU- staff and volunteers
ƒ West Midlands Science Learning Centre
ƒ The Alumni Office
to co-ordinate and maximise the benefit of their work with Schools and
identify and work proactively with a Core Group of secondary Schools and
Colleges, particularly those with pupils in the 16-18 age group, with whom
Keele can build strong, mutually beneficial relationships;
develop appropriate contact with other Schools and Colleges to maintain
a Keele ‘presence’ within the school that can be built upon by either party
if circumstances suggest it would be beneficial: a ‘second tier’ of Liaison
build and maintain a contact database for use by all those working with
Schools and Colleges;
ensure consistency and coherence of marketing material;
prepare and disseminate detailed protocols for all those undertaking
Schools Liaison work.
Target and focus
Because of the very large number of Schools and Colleges that could
potentially be targeted for liaison work it is necessary to prioritise in order to
maximise the impact of Keele’s involvement. Although any level of contact with
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any school needs to be handled professionally and supported, for internal
management of the system only, activity is focussed in priority categories as
A Core Group. In order to be effective as well as affordable, the policy will
be targeted at a Core Group of secondary schools and colleges, with
whom regular contact is maintained. The aim for Schools Liaison work
within the Core Group will be to build a strong working relationship that
encompasses activity across a wide range of disciplines and for a number
of purposes. This Core Group will be limited in number and should include
both independent and state schools. It may include KeeleLink and other
Schools with a Widening Participation agenda but is not exclusive to that
group. Additionally the Core group schools:
Should normally be schools or colleges within approximately a sixtymile radius but not necessarily those most local to Keele.
Should teach the 16-18 cohort, send a range of students to
Universities, and have a subject mix which fits Keele.
Should want to work with Keele on a regular basis.
Limited contact schools. These are schools that are not in the core group,
but with whom there is regular contact across a limited range of
disciplines. This could be a school in which there is simply a PGCE
partnership and nothing else; or it could be a school with specialised
status (in maths, or music, etc) where there is a single-discipline link with
Keele. This group might include schools that only teach up to age 16.
Other schools where only general profile-raising is attempted e.g.
because there happens to be a Keele member of staff who is a governor.
The aim with secondary schools and colleges that fall into either b or c above is
profile raising: to maintain awareness of the opportunities offered by the
University that can be developed if circumstances suggest it would be
The allocation of schools or colleges to each of these categories is reviewed on
a regular basis.
Monitoring of Schools Liaison activity
Academic Services will maintain a database of contacts and activities. A report
will be made annually to the University Learning and Teaching Committee.
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Annex A
Academic Schools- Schools Liaison (SL) responsibilities.
Those with responsibility for Schools Liaison within academic schools will be
expected to promote the aims of the Keele Schools Liaison Policy. Specifically to:
ƒ Work closely with the SL co-ordinator to promote the work of the School with
Secondary Schools and Colleges.
ƒ Work with School colleagues to identify ways in which SL responsibilities can
be fulfilled.
ƒ Assist colleagues in the preparation and delivery of SL activity in collaboration
with the SL co-ordinator.
ƒ Champion SL activity internally on behalf of the School
ƒ Keep records of SL activity within the School
ƒ Share records of activity with the SL office.
Please note:
Schools liaison, as defined by the Keele Schools Liaison policy, includes activity
undertaken in collaboration with the Widening Participation/ LLN division, as part of
professional placement programmes, and with alumni, student ambassadors,
volunteers and staff.