March News Splash

march-hare-22With the clock changes this month the days are longer and the hopefully sunshine months just that little bit closer. 

March also sees the end of the financial year and, with it, a very busy few weeks for many of us.  We’ve been like mad March hares here at Pool Heights! 

We have had so many new subscribers join our Learning Pool club this month, including our very first PCT, so welcome on board to you all.  It’s great to have you here.

Free Government Connect e-learning for all UK Councils
govconnect-logo1Government Connect is a pan-government programme providing an accredited and secure network between central government and every local authority in England and Wales.  The network is known as GCSx (Government Connect Secure Extranet).

We have been chosen by Government Connect as the channel for distributing the approved e-learning on the subject.  This comprehensive e-learning was originally created by Plymouth CC and repurposed by the Essex Online Partnership. 

It is now available, for free, to anyone who’s email address ends in to access and is ideal to train lots of people with consistent messages in a short period of time.

Visit for access to free Government Connect e-learning.

Read more

Public Sector Learning – Fresh ideas for tomorrow’s people
circle-of-colourful-people-boughtcc1The Learning Pool conference is shaping up to be the highlight of our event calendar this year with some fine speakers, interactive masterclasses and inspirational showcase sessions.

The date is Wednesday 20th May and the venue is the Hilton London Kensington hotel, in London. 

Places are going fast so book yours now.  Delegate fee for Learning Pool customers is £100, none Learning Pool customers £150.

We’ve negotiated a reduced hotel room rate for delegates on the evening before the conference and there are only a handful of rooms left.  Email to reserve one of these rooms for £109.

We will also be announcing the winners of our Customer of the Year award for 2008 at the conference and, this year, we have four categories.  Could you be a winner?  Come along to find out!
Read more

Create bespoke e-learning in minutes with Quick Builds
construction1We’ve recently done a major upgrade on our Quick Build series of courses to give them a fresh, new look and an update on the content. 

These courses have been created by us, with the help of subject matter experts, and are an ideal starting place for creating tailored e-learning for your council. 

Simply choose from the 15 courses currently upgraded and download into the Authoring Tool to add your own branding and messages. 

Read more

M-learning – another passing fad?
man-in-the-bathDuring the mid to late 1990’s we saw the emergence of e-learning; during the early 2000’s the new phrase of ‘blended’ learning was all the rage; and over the last twelve months m-learning has become the latest buzz word to grip the learning and development profession.

So, will m-learning be the next big thing?

In this article Darren Hockley, Managing Director of DeltaNet International Limited, explores the relative merits of m-learning and gives us his views on how successful it will be.

Read more

In brief

Free Authoring Tool enhancements coming soon
toolsYour Authoring Tool improves over time due to the upgrades requested by you. This means the Authoring Tool is shaped by you, our community of users.

We’re working hard on the next Authoring Tool upgrade which will be ready for launch in early May.

The enhancements coming soon include
• Additional functionality to help you produce AAA Accessibility standard output
• Improvements to the Flash template to make editing Flash objects easier
• Project main page enhancements allowing authors to link to captivate html files
• Tools enhancement to let authors quickly create an assessment for their DLE
• Publishing enhancements including colour schemes and other European languages, including Welsh

To receive the latest news about the AT5.4 upgrade please email

Manage classroom events with your DLE
it-training-suite-boughtAs part of the roadmap for developing our highly successful DLE we’re enhancing the functionality of the platform by adding on a classroom booker.

The classroom booker will double the capability of the DLE by allowing:

• Learners to book onto classroom events based on their requirements and availability
• Tutors to manage classroom events more easily
• Administrators to get a top level view of classroom events and manage them across the whole organisation

The new system is packed full of many useful features like:
• Managing multiple venues
• Managing blended learning programmes
• Allowing users to self administer
• Handling cancellations
• Creating waiting lists and managing overbooking
• Managing budgets and cost recovery
• Flexible reporting, attendance sheets, and event evaluation
• Plus much more

The classroom booker is available for a one off cost of £2,000 plus VAT and we’re pleased to already have one signed up customer. 

However, to ensure the development of the classroom booker goes ahead we need to gauge demand so please register your interest by 30th April by emailing

Deprivation of Liberty e-learning
scales-of-justice-1We know there’s quite a demand for e-learning on Deprivation of Liberty at the moment but there’s not really anything out there suitable for public sector learners.

So we’ve decided to create a course using AT5 on this topic, using a subject matter expert from LB Waltham Forest (thank you!).  Instructional design is underway and we hope to have the course ready for delivery by end April.

This a collaborative venture and as such we are offering the fully SCORM compliant course to all local authorities for a one off cost of £1,000 plus VAT with unlimited licenses.  You will be able to host it on your Learning Pool DLE or any LMS or Intranet site.

We’ve had lots of interest in this offer to date so place your order or for more details please email or call 0207 101 9383.

If this subject matter is more applicable to your social care colleagues, please let them know about this offer. 

Passport to Procurement to be rolled out to schools
shopping-bags-1As you know, we don’t like to reinvent the wheel so we’re thrilled to have won a significant piece of work for Department for Schools, Children and Families which we’ll be rolling out in May.  The SOPO award nominated Passport to Procurement course will be repurposed and then rolled out to all schools in England. 

Passport to Procurement aims to help local authorities be more effective with their procurement practices and, ultimately, improve service delivery.  It’s free to anyone with a email address and, to date, nearly 1,000 learners have taken the course.

Mary says “We think Passport to Procurement is a great product and, so it seems, does DSCF now.  It’s great news that DSCF have bought it to help schools significantly improve their purchasing practices and so, ultimately, help to make school finances stretch further.”

All councils in England and Wales can still get free access to Passport to Procurement by visiting


Welcome on board to the following new Learning Pool customers
Warwickshire County Council
Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale PCT
Bath & North East Somerset Council
Buckinghamshire County Council
London Borough of Havering
Bassetlaw District Council
Cotswold District Council
Burnley Borough Council
Borough Council of Wellingborough
Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council
Thurrock Council
Herefordshire County Council

New courses added this month
Introduction to Projxsoft by Waltham Forest
Web Cycle e-invoicing by Waltham Forest 
Meeting the IIP standards by Waltham Forest 
Introduction to Data Protection by Waltham Forest

Dates for your diary
Wed 1st & Thu 2nd AT Workshop, London
Mon 20th, DLE Workshop, Worcester
Wed 22nd, DLE Workshop, London

Wed 6th & Thu 7th AT Workshop,London
Tue 12th & Wed 13th, AT Workshop, Manchester
Wed 20th LP Conference, London

Latest blogs
The Plight of the Long Distance Worker
On the right track
Sowing the Seeds
Mind your language

and finally…
sky-divers“If you think you can, and if you think you can’t, you’re right.”
Henry Ford


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