Equality and Diversity statement

Our Values

Claire Collins Consultancy (CCC) celebrates and values the diversity brought to its workforce by individuals and believes that CCC will benefit from employing a diverse workforce which represents our learner profile and the surrounding communities by providing positive role models for both learners and staff. We promote equality, diversity and inclusion to all our staff and learners and value difference.


General Principles

  • CCC is committed to equality of opportunity for all employees and learners regardless of their status and will treat all employees with dignity and respect.
  • CCC will create a positive inclusive ethos with a shared commitment to challenging and preventing stereotyping, prejudice and discrimination between all members of CCC community.
  • CCC will seek to promote a positive working environment free from discrimination, harassment or victimisation.

Download our full Equality, Diversity + Inclusion Policy



Welcome to the OTLA 7 (English and maths) home page. Here you will find the following:

  • A timetable of events for the year, including event details and booking links
  • Your OTLA 7 Padlet board, containing CPD resources, reporting templates and other useful reading and resources for OTLA 7
  • A direct link to your OTLA 7 half-termly newsletters
  • Other helpful advice and guidance relating to the OTLA 7 programme

We hope you find this page useful. If you have any further queries or questions, please approach your mentor and research group lead in the first instance, or email us at OTLA@ccConsultancy.co.uk

English, Maths and EDS Action Research Programmes Sharing Event

Friday, 9 July 2021, 09:30 – 16:00

A celebration of all that you have achieved on the English, Maths and EDS Action Research Programmes, this highlight of the programme is not to be missed! During this event we’ll come together as a full collective, as project teams share findings and reflections from their action research projects. Please note this is a compulsory CPD event; each participating organisation must have representation from at least one participant on the day.

Research Round Tables

Facilitated by invited guests, our Research Round Tables provide space and opportunity to further explore key aspects of action research, and its application within post 16 learning spaces. Attendance at these sessions is voluntary, as we build collaboratively upon some of the topics explored during our larger OTLA 7 CPD sessions. Sign up for one, or all of the Research Round Tables using the button below.

Writing and DisseminationTuesday, 20 July 2021, 15:30 – 17:00

Research Summer School (2021)

Led by Emerita Professor Jean McNiff, the Research Summer School will take place for 6 consecutive Tuesdays from the 17th August 2021, from 3:30 – 5:00 on Zoom. There are only 20 places on this course but we will operate a waiting list if over-subscribed. These sessions are for anyone taking part in OTLA.

Sign up the Research Summer School below or contact us on OTLA@ccConsultancy.co.uk for more information.

Summer 2021 (Tuesdays, 17th August – 21st September)15:30 – 17:00


Programme Resources

News to Share


Professional Learning

Professional Learning

We offer professional learning and development in a range of areas, including: train the trainers (in teaching, learning & assessment approaches); and personal/ pedagogical CPD in English, maths and digital literacies.

Train the Trainer courses

(in the context of screen industries) for ScreenSkills

If you’re interested in L3 accreditation in maths and English, please visit this page.

Practitioner Research

Practitioner-led Action Research

We have led national practitioner research programmes in England since 2014. Our programmes aim to support teachers, trainers, support workers and managers from post-16 learning providers to:

  • develop rigorous, transferable action research approaches that inspire sustained professional development for all practitioners in the sector; and
  • generate learner-friendly strategies and resources that address critical issues in current post-16 provision. 

For 2020/ 2021, in partnership with That Reading Thing and The SfL Network, our team of research facilitators and subject specialist mentors are supporting 36 action research projects focussing on English and maths on behalf of The Education and Training Foundation. Together, they will establish teaching approaches and research methodologies with learners that help them to make progress in English and maths. Practitioners are working on study programmes, apprenticeships, adult courses, secure estates programmes and support ESOL learners/ learners with SEND/LDD.  

Our collective aim this year is to support English and maths practitioners and providers to gain a broader and deeper understanding of what works, for whom and why.

Find out more about previous practitioner research programmes by selecting the titles to the right.

  • PLAR 1

    Working with a team from emCETT, we provided blended support through the practitioner–led action research programme to 63 practitioners or groups of practitioners from organisations, reflecting the diversity of the education and training sector across England.

  • PLAR 2

    Working with a team from emCETT, we supported 63 providers through the Education and Training Foundation’s Practitioner Research Programme to to undertake practitioner–led action research.

  • OTLA 3

    As part of OTLA Phase 3, working in the NE of England and Cumbria, practitioner-led action research took place with a focus on attainment, retention and progression. Thirteen projects took place,  involving 42 providers and over 200 practitioners from colleges, adult and community learning, offender learning, third sector and independent training providers.

  • OTLA 4 (digital)

    In 2018, we supported action research projects focussing on digital practices in post-16 contexts, working with our partners the Newcastle College Group. 19 organisations collaborated across 5 projects on topics as diverse as ‘unlocking social capital to support outcomes in maths and English’ to ‘engaging staff with using digital technology within teaching, learning and assessment’.

  • OTLA 6 (English)

    This was the sixth phase of OTLA (Outstanding, Teaching, Learning and Assessment) projects funded by the Education and Training Foundation. Twelve projects researched new approaches for teaching English in the post-16 sector.

  • OTLA 7 (English and Maths)

    This is the seventh phase of OTLA (Outstanding, Teaching, Learning and Assessment) projects funded by the Education and Training Foundation. 36 projects are researching approaches for teaching English and Maths in the post-16 sector.

  • OTLA 8 (English, ESOL + EDS)

    This is the eighth phase of OTLA (Outstanding, Teaching, Learning and Assessment) projects funded by the Education and Training Foundation. With partners: NATECLA, That Reading Thing, Skills for Life Network + Real Time Education.


Practitioner-Led Action Research Programme


English, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) + Essential Digital Skills (EDS)

Applications are now open for Phase 8 of the Outstanding Teaching, Learning and Assessment programme

A team led by ccConsultancy in partnership with That Reading Thing, Real Time Education, NATECLA and Skills for Life Network has secured funding to support action research projects that focus on approaches to teaching, learning and assessment in English, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and Essential Digital Skills (EDS). Phase 8 of the Education and Training Foundation’s (ETF’s) national Outstanding Teaching Learning and Assessment programme (OTLA 8) is supported by a team of experts in Post-16 English, ESOL and EDS. The programme, which is funded by the Department for Education, is open to eligible organisations funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA).

The OTLA 8 programme aims to systematically improve the teaching of English, ESOL and EDS through supporting practitioners to investigate teaching, learning and assessment within their own classroom contexts.

Projects will develop approaches and strategies that lead to improved practice, demonstrable through enhanced learner outcomes. Using action research as a vehicle, projects will develop and share approaches to outstanding practice across a wide range of contexts and topics.

Projects will be designed to have reach both within and between organisations. All who support direct teaching (including teachers, trainers, assessors, managers, administrative staff, employers, parents, carers and governors) will be given opportunity to participate, each sharing the overriding aim of devising, developing and supporting high quality, meaningful and effective teaching, learning and assessment processes. Learners will also play an integral role within projects, helping ensure that practices developed are learner-centred, inclusive and supportive of their progress.

ESFA-funded providers are invited to submit applications to be included in the OTLA 8 programme.  Funding, worth up to £5,000 for each organisation, is available to cover staff participation (including, for instance, remission / travel/ expenses). Note, project funding cannot be spent on equipment or any other form of capital expenditure.  An additional package of support (managed by the OTLA 8 programme team) will cover coaching / mentoring, CPD and dissemination costs. Funding will be distributed by the OTLA 8 team directly to each participating organisation.

Applications are welcomed from individual organisations and/ or organisations working in partnership. Funding is available for a maximum of 42 organisations.  The themes of the projects will be determined by the sector but the ETF would particularly like to encourage action research projects focusing on approaches to teaching English, ESOL and EDS that:

  • seek to address current challenges in teaching, learning and assessment
  • enhance attainment, retention and progression for learners.

To give you an idea of what other OTLA projects have done in the past, please see the  OTLA 6 (English) Summary booklet.

Organisations wishing to submit proposals for funding should read this downloadable guidance before completing the online application form.  This form is designed for applications from single organisations and/ or groups of organisations. The form must be completed and submitted by 10:00am on Monday 2nd August 2021.

We have also created a video, ‘Is this project for me?’, which shares further guidance for applicants, including answers to frequently asked questions about the OTLA programme. Please note that this video was recorded for our current OTLA programme (OTLA 7), which focused on English and maths rather than English, ESOL and EDS. Nevertheless, the video contains lots of useful guidance and is worth watching in preparation for your application for OTLA 8.

If you have any questions about the application process, please email us at otla@ccconsultancy.co.uk.


Access the OTLA Wakelet Space for curated conference programmes, mailouts and more!


20-21 Short Action Research Project

EDS Final Sharing Event Curation

OTLA 7 (English + Maths) Practitioner Showcase