Dr Monica Chavez shares insights on incorporating social mobility into college curriculums, focusing on inclusivity, fostering a growth mindset, and exchanging best practices for transformative education.
The significance of Social Mobility Day cannot be overstated, as it holds profound importance not just for the City of Liverpool College but for our entire society. This day serves as a powerful reminder that every individual possesses inherent value and potential, regardless of their background or circumstances. It symbolises our collective commitment to breaking down barriers that impede social progress and striving for equal opportunities for all.
At the City of Liverpool College, Social Mobility Day holds a special place in our calendar. As an institution devoted to knowledge and empowerment, we firmly acknowledge that education stands as the cornerstone of social mobility. It is through education that individuals can transcend the limitations imposed by their socio-economic backgrounds, unlocking a vast realm of possibilities and transforming their lives for the better. Consequently, this significant day allows us to reaffirm our mission of providing accessible and high-quality education to our diverse student body, empowering them to pursue their aspirations and make meaningful contributions to society.
In essence, Social Mobility Day amplifies our unwavering commitment to foster a culture of equal opportunities and dismantle systemic barriers. It serves as a powerful reminder of the transformative potential that education holds in shaping a brighter future for all individuals, regardless of their background or circumstances.
How does the City of Liverpool College promote social mobility among its students and the wider community?
The City of Liverpool College is deeply committed to fostering social mobility among our students and the wider community. We recognise that social mobility extends beyond academic achievement and encompasses personal development, mindset, skills acquisition, and community engagement. With this understanding, we have implemented a range of initiatives and support systems to empower our students and dismantle the barriers they face.
Our curriculum is carefully designed to be inclusive and diverse, offering a wide range of courses that cater to varied interests and abilities. We place a strong emphasis on the development of transferable skills, critical thinking, and creativity, equipping our students to navigate a rapidly changing world and pursue their passions effectively.
In promoting social mobility, mindset plays a crucial role. It encompasses elements such as social capital, cultural capital, resilience, and confidence. Our unique Social & Cultural Curriculum Framework and Tool, tailored to the Further Education sector, bring these elements to life. Mindset acts as a powerful catalyst for social mobility, shaping individuals’ attitudes, influencing their decision-making processes, and equipping them with the tools to navigate complex social structures.
Our aim is to cultivate the right mindset and empower individuals with the necessary skills and resources, optimising the lives of our students so that social mobility becomes a tangible reality for all. Through our comprehensive approach, we strive to create a transformative educational experience that opens doors, broadens horizons, and empowers individuals to reach their full potential.
What role does the Director of Social and Cultural Curriculum play in supporting social mobility at the City of Liverpool College?
At The City of Liverpool College, the Director of Social and Cultural Curriculum plays a pivotal role in supporting social mobility. This position embodies the College’s vision, recognising the transformative potential of education and mindset in promoting social equity and empowering individuals from diverse backgrounds.
As the Director, my responsibilities encompass overseeing the development and implementation of the research-informed Social & Cultural Curriculum Framework and Tools. These valuable resources are designed to enhance the student journey both inside and outside the classroom. Working closely with the teaching staff, I cultivate a student-centred approach that encourages innovative teaching methods and creates an environment conducive to learning and the sharing of best practices.
A key aspect of my role is ensuring that teaching and learning practices are tailored to meet the diverse needs of students from various backgrounds. Collaborating with my colleagues, I actively participate in the development of instructional strategies that foster the building of strong relationships (social capital), curiosity (cultural capital), and confidence. I believe the biggest opportunity to empower students is during class time, when we have their full attention, and they are fully engaged. Therefore, I have made building social capital and cultural capital in TLA my priority.
Promoting cultural awareness within the College community is another essential facet of my role. The City of Liverpool College places great emphasis on the importance of cultural capital in social mobility, striving to create a curriculum that values and integrates diverse perspectives, histories, and experiences. By incorporating multicultural content, celebrating cultural events, and fostering intercultural dialogue, I ensure that students develop a profound understanding and appreciation for diverse cultures. This enriches their educational experience and equips them with the intercultural competencies needed to thrive in our globalised society.
How can other colleges incorporate social mobility into their curriculum?
- Embrace inclusivity: It is crucial to ensure that your curriculum reflects the diverse needs and experiences of your students. Incorporate a wide range of perspectives, histories, and cultural content to foster a sense of belonging and promote cultural awareness. By creating an inclusive learning environment, you can support students from all backgrounds in their educational journey.
- Foster a growth mindset: Encourage students to adopt a growth mindset that values effort, resilience, and continuous improvement. Help them believe in their ability to overcome challenges and embrace opportunities for growth. By promoting a growth mindset, you empower students to develop the confidence and determination needed to navigate social structures and pursue their goals.
- Collaborate and share best practices: Engage with colleagues and experts in the field to exchange ideas and share best practices. Collaborative efforts enable the development of innovative teaching methods and instructional strategies that promote social mobility. By working together, we can create a collective impact and maximise the potential for positive change in students’ lives.
By implementing these strategies, we can make a meaningful difference in promoting social mobility within our curriculum and empowering students to realise their full potential. Together, we can create an educational environment that fosters equal opportunities and prepares students for a future where social mobility becomes a reality for all.
By Dr Monica Chavez, Director of Social and Cultural Curriculum, The City of Liverpool College