Whilst candidates were on the campaign trail for the recent Scottish local elections, the Improvement Service was working in partnership with all Scottish councils to develop an induction pack for new and returning elected members.
A key priority of the Improvement Service is to enhance the capacity of local governance and local political leaders, by working in collaboration withScotland's councils and other key stakeholders to establish high quality and cost effective development programmes and opportunities that support elected members in developing their skills to better governScotland's local communities.
As part of the induction pack, the Improvement Service commissioned eComScotlandto create a flagship elected member induction eLearning course, following a tender exercise.
The ‘Elected Members Induction Programme’ is designed to help elected members in their early days in office and provide guidance and information on a range of complex issues, including links to local online information where relevant. It is available to all 1,223 elected members inScotland. The key areas covered in the eLearning course are as follows:
- What is involved in being an elected member
- How the council works
- Support and practical information available
- Corporate Governance
- Working relationships to be established
- The role of an Elected Member, focussing on ward & council level responsibilities
The Improvement Service undertook a survey of elected members in August 2011, to ask them what advice they would pass on to those elected for the first time in May. The Improvement Service and eComScotlandincorporated this advice into the eLearning through the use of videos, elected member spotlights and 'what we wish we had known' quotes.
The course takes around 60 minutes to complete and can be undertaken at the elected member's own pace at a time and location convenient to them.
To further support the elected members in their role, eCom Scotland assisted the Improvement Service in creating a new eLearning course providing an ‘Introduction to the Planning System in Scotland’, useful for members with a specialist planning role. This course takes around 30 minutes and considers all aspects with regard to applications, appeals and consent required. Councils can download this course from the IS learning hub, access2learning (A2L).
More about eCom's eLearning content creation expertise is available at http://www.ecomscotland.com/view/bespoke-elearning.aspx