Webinar – Grow Your Own PSWs: Regional Adaptations of the Living Classroom in Long Term Care

Join us for a Living Classroom webinar, part of AdvantAge Ontario’s Virtual Summer School. Visit the website for the full program and registration details.

Grow Your Own PSWs: Regional Adaptations of the Living Classroom in Long Term Care

Tuesday, August 11, 2020, 10:15 am-11:15 pm

  • Learn about the benefits of the Living Classroom, a postsecondary partnership program for addressing PSW shortages, including its impact on PSW recruitment and retention.
  • Explore evidence collected from use and regional adaptation of this model in different long-term care settings, and implementation strategies for successful program delivery from a range of stakeholder perspectives.
  • Identify how to assess your organization’s readiness to start a Living Classroom.

Speakers

Photo of Scott MitchellScott Mitchell, Knowledge Broker, Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging

Scott Mitchell is a Knowledge Broker at the Ontario Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) hosted by the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging in Waterloo. He is a co-founder and coordinating committee member of the Canadian Knowledge Transfer and Exchange Community of Practice.


Photo of Shelley SheedyShelley Sheedy, Director, Long-Term Care, Bonnechere Manor, Renfrew and Miramichi Lodge, Pembroke

Shelley Sheedy is an experienced health care leader with a diverse range of acute care, community, education and long-term care experience. Within long-term care, Shelley has held progressive leadership positions including Resident Care Co-ordinator, Director of Care, Administrator and is currently the Director of Long-Term Care for both of the County of Renfrew’s Homes — Bonnechere Manor and Miramichi Lodge — with responsibility for 346 residents, over 500 staff, approximately 300 volunteers and a $32M budget. She also oversaw the redevelopment of the 166-bed Miramichi Lodge. Both Homes have achieved Accreditation Canada’s highest “Accreditation with Exemplary Standing” Award.

Shelley holds a Masters degree in Health Studies and a certificate in Healthcare Leadership from the Telfer School of Management (University of Ottawa) and sits on a number of regional and provincial committees. She has published several articles including “A Call to Action — Dispelling the Myths and Reducing the Negative Factors Impacting Nursing Recruitment in LTC”; “Should Upper Tier Municipalities in Ontario Contribute to the Operations of a LTC Home?”; and “Improving the Image of Nursing in Ontario — What Can you Do?”

Shelley’s career passions include leading change with a continuous quality improvement focus on evidenced-based practices and implementing innovative human resource practices.

Photo of Heather Klein-HorsmanHeather Klein-Horsman, PSW and PN Program Coordinator, Algonquin College

Heather Klein-Horsman, RN, graduated from University of Ottawa in 2006 and continued on to complete her Critical Care Course through Algonquin College. She worked at the intensive care unit at the Ottawa Civic Hospital from 2006-2009. In 2009 she moved to the Renfrew Valley region and started in the ICU/ER department at the Pembroke Regional Hospital and part-time clinical teaching with Algonquin College Pembroke campus. She completed her Masters in Nursing through Charles Sturt University, was hired full time at Algonquin College in 2014 and now coordinates both PSW and PN programs (the PSW Living Classroom is in its second year) and teaches throughout the Nursing programs. Heather has a passion for teaching, leadership and change management and serves on multiple committees through the College and Provincial level.

Photo of Lori CrossonLori Crosson, Director of Continuing Education and E-Learning, Sault College

Lori is responsible for various PSW programming including online offerings, in-community offerings and in-facility offerings. She has been a member of the Sault College Continuing Education team for over 10 years and has experience in various models of flexible education.

Enhancing nursing home care for seniors: impact of a living classroom on nursing assistant’s education

Veronique M. Boscart, Lynn McCleary, Paul Stolee, Linda Sheiban Taucar, Jessica Wilhelm, Keia Johnson, Josie d’Avernas, Paul Brown & Marlene Raasok, Educational Gerontology, 46:8, 461-472
https://doi.org/10.1080/03601277.2020.1774842

Abstract

Nursing Assistants (NAs) are the largest workforce in nursing homes, but often lack adequate preparation for their role. The Living Classroom (LC) is an integrated learning approach, whereby a NA program is delivered in a nursing home (NH) in collaboration with a community college. This paper describes the implementation and evaluation of the LC. Mixed methods were used to gather data from 48 NA students, 5 faculty, and 42 NH staff over 30 weeks. Students, faculty, and nursing home staff described the LC as a positive learning experience. Students’ gerontological knowledge increased over time (p = .0012). Students reported very positive relationships with program mentors and NH residents. The LC provides a unique approach to prepare NAs to work in nursing homes. This model could expand to other educational programs with a gerontology focus.

Aged care: Some workers feel they’ve drawn the short straw

Aged care workers are among the lowest paid and the least qualified in the sector with many feeling like they had “drawn the short straw” if they ended up in their jobs. Yet a highly successful Australian program that provided on the job training, research and education in 16 aged care facilities was dropped in 2015 because the federal government wouldn’t fund it…. Continue reading

By Julie Power, Brisbane Times.

Aged care workers are among the lowest paid and the least qualified in the sector with many feeling like they had “drawn the short straw” if they ended up in their jobs.

New models of “teaching nursing homes”, though, had improved retention with many seeing a job in aged care as a career, the Royal Commission on Aged Care Quality and Safety heard on Tuesday.

Yet a highly successful Australian program that provided on the job training, research and education in 16 aged care facilities was dropped in 2015 because the federal government wouldn’t fund it.

A report found the Teaching and Research Aged Care Services (TRACS) program had proved the value of providing “ongoing education to the existing aged care workforce to further build their skills and understanding of care for older people”.

Read the full story at Brisbane Times

Grow Your Own PSWs: Regional Adaptations of the Living Classroom in LTC

UPDATE (March 18): The AdvantAge Ontario conference has been cancelled due to COVID-19. … Continue reading

UPDATE (March 18): The AdvantAge Ontario conference has been cancelled due to COVID-19

Join us for a Living Classroom presentation on Friday, April 24, 11:15 am-12:15 pm, at Advancing Senior Care, AdvantAge Ontario’s annual general meeting and convention.

  • Learn about the benefits of the Living Classroom, a postsecondary partnership program for addressing PSW shortages, including its impact on PSW recruitment and retention.
  • Explore evidence collected from use and regional adaptation of this model in different long-term care settings, and implementation strategies for successful program delivery from a range of stakeholder perspectives.
  • Identify how to assess your organization’s readiness to start a Living Classroom.

Speakers

Photo of Scott MitchellScott Mitchell, Knowledge Broker, Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging

Scott Mitchell is a Knowledge Broker at the Ontario Centre for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) hosted by the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging in Waterloo. He is a co-founder and coordinating committee member of the Canadian Knowledge Transfer and Exchange Community of Practice.


Photo of Shelley SheedyShelley Sheedy, Director, Long-Term Care, Bonnechere Manor, Renfrew and Miramichi Lodge, Pembroke

Shelley Sheedy is an experienced health care leader with a diverse range of acute care, community, education and long-term care experience. Within long-term care, Shelley has held progressive leadership positions including Resident Care Co-ordinator, Director of Care, Administrator and is currently the Director of Long-Term Care for both of the County of Renfrew’s Homes — Bonnechere Manor and Miramichi Lodge — with responsibility for 346 residents, over 500 staff, approximately 300 volunteers and a $32M budget. She also oversaw the redevelopment of the 166-bed Miramichi Lodge. Both Homes have achieved Accreditation Canada’s highest “Accreditation with Exemplary Standing” Award.

Shelley holds a Masters degree in Health Studies and a certificate in Healthcare Leadership from the Telfer School of Management (University of Ottawa) and sits on a number of regional and provincial committees. She has published several articles including “A Call to Action — Dispelling the Myths and Reducing the Negative Factors Impacting Nursing Recruitment in LTC”; “Should Upper Tier Municipalities in Ontario Contribute to the Operations of a LTC Home?”; and “Improving the Image of Nursing in Ontario — What Can you Do?”

Shelley’s career passions include leading change with a continuous quality improvement focus on evidenced-based practices and implementing innovative human resource practices.

Photo of Heather Klein-HorsmanHeather Klein-Horsman, PSW and PN Program Coordinator, Algonquin College

Heather Klein-Horsman, RN, graduated from University of Ottawa in 2006 and continued on to complete her Critical Care Course through Algonquin College. She worked at the intensive care unit at the Ottawa Civic Hospital from 2006-2009. In 2009 she moved to the Renfrew Valley region and started in the ICU/ER department at the Pembroke Regional Hospital and part-time clinical teaching with Algonquin College Pembroke campus. She completed her Masters in Nursing through Charles Sturt University, was hired full time at Algonquin College in 2014 and now coordinates both PSW and PN programs (the PSW Living Classroom is in its second year) and teaches throughout the Nursing programs. Heather has a passion for teaching, leadership and change management and serves on multiple committees through the College and Provincial level.


Photo of Pamela FicocielloPamela Ficociello, Executive Director, Algoma Manor

Pamela Ficociello serves as a AFS Board President, GPA Certified Coach and is a part of the Sault College Business Advisory Committee, and LTC Regional Committee. She has over 10 years of experience in a long-term care setting and 6 years of experience working in the mental health field as a Clinician Care and Treatment Worker.


Photo of Lori CrossonLori Crosson, Director of Continuing Education and E-Learning, Sault College

Lori is responsible for various PSW programming including online offerings, in-community offerings and in-facility offerings. She has been a member of the Sault College Continuing Education team for over 10 years and has experience in various models of flexible education.

Conestoga workshop shares best practices for implementation of Living Classrooms

College administrators and faculty from across the province recently attended a full-day best practices workshop delivered by Conestoga’s Schlegel Centre for Advancing Seniors Care to discuss the key features of implementing a successful living classroom — an innovative interprofessional approach to preparing students for successful careers working with seniors in long-term care and retirement living…. Continue reading

Reprinted from Conestoga College News

College administrators and faculty from across the province recently attended a full-day best practices workshop delivered by Conestoga’s Schlegel Centre for Advancing Seniors Care to discuss the key features of implementing a successful living classroom — an innovative interprofessional approach to preparing students for successful careers working with seniors in long-term care and retirement living.

Conestoga’s first Living Classroom opened in 2009 in partnership with Schlegel Villages at the Village of Riverside Glen in Guelph, and the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging (RIA). In 2015, a second Living Classroom opened at the Village of University Gates in Waterloo.

The experiences of Conestoga, Schlegel Villages and RIA in developing these Living Classrooms has been compiled in an implementation guidebook for other institutions interested in launching similar models.

“Seniors deserve the health care they need and it’s our responsibility to develop a workforce that can serve them,” said Dr. Veronique Boscart, director of Conestoga’s Schlegel Centre for Advancing Seniors Care, as she welcomed participants at the Doon campus. “Today we want to focus on the Living Classroom and share our experiences, including what works well and what doesn’t.”

The motivation behind the first Living Classroom was to increase the number of personal support worker (PSW) and practical nursing graduates to meet workforce demands in Guelph. PSWs comprise more than 70 per cent of the staff in long-term care, but there aren’t enough of them to support the care needs of the growing older adult population. The situation is only expected to worsen over coming years as the population of seniors continues to grow.

Boscart stressed that the solution goes beyond just placing a classroom within a long-term care setting.

The Living Classroom is an interprofessional approach where a post-secondary program is delivered within the context of a long-term care home, with team members consisting of faculty, students, long-term care teams, residents and families who engage with each other within a culture of learning. Students bridge the gap between theoretical learning and clinical practice in the actual setting where they will eventually practice.

During the interactive workshop, Boscart introduced participants to the 10 building blocks for the Living Classroom, which are grouped under four stages of implementation: exploring the potential of a Living Classroom, developing the foundations, implementation, and promotion and sustainability.

The approach has proven successful with a variety of stakeholders, including residents and families, who report they have been positively impacted by the Living Classroom.

“I really do believe that we can change things,” said Boscart when discussing the current challenges of seniors’ care and the role colleges play in building a workforce that will contribute to the continual improvement of long-term care. “Together we are a lot stronger than we think we are.”

The Living Classroom at Riverside Glen delivers PSW programming, and both PSW and practical nursing students attend classes at The Village of University Gates. To date, more than 800 Conestoga graduates have trained at a Living Classroom and approximately 90 per cent of them continue to work with seniors.

The Schlegel Centre for Advancing Seniors Care at Conestoga College works in collaboration with Schlegel Villages and the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging to develop innovative education, improve workforce development and strengthen care practices to support care for seniors and their families across Canada. It provides a hub for collaboration with partners to advance training and practice approaches and share best practices and resources to enhance seniors care and living.

Educating future LTC PSWs through a Living Classroom

The Living Classroom at Perley Rideau is based on a successful model introduced by Conestoga College and the Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) at the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging. The program meets all of the requirements for the one-year Ontario College PSW Program Certificate…. Continue reading

Reprinted from Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care

It’s hard to argue with the numbers. Government of Canada projections indicate that by 2030 nearly one in four Canadians will be over the age of 65. Less than a decade ago, this figure was closer to one in seven. At the same time, the pool of personal support workers (PSWs) in long-term care (LTC) has been declining to the point where the Ontario Personal Support Workers Association (OPSWA) refers to it as “an occupation in crisis.”

One LTC home in Ottawa South is doing something about it. In an effort to recruit motivated new PSWs into careers in long-term healthcare, the Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre is going back to school. Or, rather, school is coming to them through an innovative Integrated Personal Support Worker (IPSW) project in partnership with Algonquin College’s School of Health and Community Studies.

They call it the Living Classroom, an interprofessional healthcare education program delivered on-site at the Perley Rideau campus. Working out of a specially outfitted classroom laboratory, Algonquin College PSW students learn theory and skills from their own teachers, and are then able to put what they’ve learned into practice by engaging with residents, families, and healthcare team members inside a real work setting. The first cohort graduated in January 2018.

The Living Classroom at Perley Rideau is based on a successful model introduced by Conestoga College and the Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) at the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging. The program meets all of the requirements for the one-year Ontario College PSW Program Certificate.

The environment for this IPSW immersive, shared learning project could not be more ideal. The Perley and Rideau Veterans’ Health Centre is one of Ontario’s largest and most progressive LTC homes with 250 veteran residents and 200 community residents. It is also an innovative Seniors Village that also includes 139 independent-living apartments and a guest house. The Perley Rideau has a long history in the nation’s capital and was established in its present configuration in 1995. Today, it is served by 800 staff and 350 volunteers, and is rapidly positioning itself as a centre of excellence in frailty-informed care.

According to Director of Clinical Practice Jennifer Plant, plenty of opportunity exists for students to see how PSWs at Perley Rideau are treated as integral members of the healthcare team. The goal of the Living Classroom, she says, is ultimately to produce strong graduates who will want to take up staff positions in LTC.

“It’s very difficult to recruit healthcare professionals into long-term care,” Plant says. “By having the Living Classroom on site, we have an opportunity to showcase what we do so that students can see how our PSWs are valued as peer trainers and as members of our quality improvement teams that recommend, develop and implement leading practices.”

Research Coordinator Enrique Soto, PhD, a sociologist with an extensive background in health care research, has been with Perley Rideau since 2017, and is heavily involved in a comprehensive evaluation of the Living Classroom’s first cohort. The Ontario CLRI at Bruyère is assisting with the qualitative data analysis of the evaluation through the expertise of researcher Shelly Crick, PhD, and in sharing what is being learned through the offices of knowledge broker Michele Fleming.

“We thought this was a great way to partner with people who have the expertise and talent to help us with the evaluation,” Soto says.

Feedback from the participant questionnaires and focus group discussions following the first cohort graduation looks promising. PSW students who chose the immersive Living Classroom model over the standard model of college-based instruction interspersed with periods of clinical practice indicated they were more likely to go on to work as PSWs in LTC.

This is encouraging news to Plant, whose sights are squarely set on attracting strong healthcare recruits. She says that implementing evidence-informed practices such as the Living Classroom supports staff professional growth, which is key in improving the quality of resident care and patient safety.

“We continue to partner with the Ontario CLRI in building our Living Classroom,” Plant says. “We have a common goal in spreading innovation, and we want to make sure we are achieving this by showcasing the rewarding careers we can offer in long-term care.”

The Living Classroom and Health Human Resources in Long-Term Care

The Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) will be presenting on the Living Classroom at the AdvantAge Region 7 meeting in Ottawa on Friday, November 8, 2019. This interactive presentation by the Ontario CLRI and invited guests will explore successful Living Classroom models in Ontario (including the Ottawa region)…. Continue reading

The Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI) will be presenting on the Living Classroom at the AdvantAge Region 7 meeting in Ottawa on Friday, November 8, 2019. This interactive presentation by the Ontario CLRI and invited guests will explore successful Living Classroom models in Ontario (including the Ottawa region), engage participants in a hands-on activity to assess their own readiness to start a Living Classroom, and discuss the impact on health human resource challenges in LTC. Information about other CLRI initiatives to address HHR issues will also be provided.

Location: Hillel Lodge, 10 Nadolny Sachs Private, Ottawa
When: November 8, 2019, 8:00 am-3:00 pm
Cost: $20 (cash) per person

RSVP: Kelly Thompson, Kelly@hillel-ltc.com

Full-Day Workshop: Best Practices in Implementing a Living Classroom for Programs in Seniors Care

Join us on Friday, November 22, 2019, for an opportunity to understand the key features of implementing a successful Living Classroom for post-secondary education in seniors care. Conestoga College in partnership with Schlegel Villages and the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging, has over a decade of experience operating a living classroom. Benefit from the experience and expertise of Dr. Veronique Boscart and the Living Classroom Team…. Continue reading

Workshop Description

An opportunity to understand the key features of implementing a successful Living Classroom for post-secondary education in seniors care. Conestoga College in partnership with Schlegel Villages and the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging, has over a decade of experience operating a living classroom. Benefit from the experience and expertise of Dr. Veronique Boscart and the Living Classroom Team.

The Living Classroom is an innovative educational experience for students whose career path will lead them to work with older adults. The education program is delivered in a long-term care home, led by a post-secondary educator and involving students and those living and working in the long-term care home within a culture of interactive learning.

» Download the Event Flyer (PDF)

Workshop Details

Date: November 22, 2019, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Location: Conestoga College, Doon (Kitchener) campus
Cost: $300 per participant including lunch and refreshments (provided by The Ontario Centres for Learning, Research and Innovation in Long-Term Care (CLRI)), parking and materials

Presenter

Dr. Veronique Boscart, RN, PhD
Executive Dean, School of Health & Life Sciences
CIHR/Schlegel Industrial Research Chair for Colleges in Seniors Care
Executive Director, Schlegel Centre for Advancing Seniors Care
Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

Participant Benefit

College administrators and faculty will learn in an interactive environment about key success factors and practical applications to grow and sustain an innovative Living Classroom within the college and LTC context.

Registration

CLICK TO REGISTER Register by November 15, 2019

For more information, contact
Regina Dryngiewicz, Program Assistant
519-748-5220 ext. 3635
SchlegelCentre@conestogac.on.ca

Algonquin College Personal Support Worker Program at Bonnechere Manor a Success!

In response to the nation-wide shortage of Personal Support Workers, Bonnechere Manor reached out to their long-time education partner Algonquin College to talk about providing an onsite program at their home. Consistent with the philosophy that Bonnechere Manor is the residents’ home first and foremost, the residents were consulted and enthusiastically welcomed the students into their spaces. Shelley Sheedy, Director of Long-Term Care for the County of Renfrew, says, “This program has truly been a win/win — on May 28, 2019 we held a job fair for area employers of PSWs so that our community could benefit from this partnership as well and this hard-working group of students will gain employment in their community. With our residents, we celebrate the PSW students who participated in the program.”… Continue reading

Reprinted by permission from Manor Banner, Summer 2019

In response to the nation-wide shortage of Personal Support Workers (PSW) — the backbone of nursing and personal care services in long-term care — Bonnechere Manor reached out to their long-time education partner Algonquin College to talk about providing an onsite program at their home. Shelley Sheedy, Director of Long-Term Care for the County of Renfrew, says, “I simply contacted Jamie Bramburger, Acting Dean, last fall and within a couple of discussions, we had an agreement to trial an onsite PSW program at the Manor starting in January 2019.” Mrs. Sheedy notes that, consistent with the philosophy that Bonnechere Manor is the residents’ home first and foremost, the residents were consulted and enthusiastically welcomed the students into their spaces. “This program has truly been a win/win — on May 28, 2019 we held a job fair for area employers of PSWs so that our community could benefit from this partnership as well and this hard-working group of students will gain employment in their community. With our residents, we celebrate the PSW students who participated in the program.”

Bonnechere Manor resident Peter English said, “The students were fantastic! It was wonderful to be able to welcome them into our home as they learned how to be awesome PSWs!”

Jamie Bramburger, Acting Dean at the Pembroke Waterfront Campus, added, “This has been a wonderful partnership and we are so pleased to celebrate the success of our Personal Support Worker students as they complete their program. This is a wonderful example of how the College can collaborate with our community to address labour market challenges for our organizational partners. We congratulate all of our soon to be graduates, and we sincerely thank Bonnechere Manor for their leadership in helping us deliver the program in Renfrew.”

PSW student Richard Leavoy said, “The partnership between the College and Bonnechere Manor has given us students an amazing opportunity to learn and practice in the field all at the same time. Getting to meet and work with the residents and staff was a great experience. This is truly different from any other classroom I’ve been in. The teachers at school really worked hard to make sure we had a great experience and I would highly recommend anyone on the fence to really consider taking this program.”

Based on this positive experience, Bonnechere Manor is excited to be in discussions with Algonquin College about planning another PSW program onsite.

Growing Partnership with Niagara College

In September, Radiant Care and Niagara College will be taking their partnership to a new level by offering an entirely on-site PSW program at Tabor Manor with some unused rooms being converted into living classrooms, complete with Long-Term Care beds and virtual, electronic residents, as well as direct access to Tabor Manor’s Long-Term Care home and Community Support Service program, in order to fulfill program clinical placement requirements…. Continue reading

Reprinted from Radiant Care News

Radiant Care’s growing relationship with Niagara College is improving the lives of employees, residents, tenants, and seniors in our community, with new initiatives on the horizon.

Radiant Care and Niagara College have an ongoing partnership through which Niagara College Nursing students complete clinical placements at Radiant Care to develop their Nursing skills and gain experience working in the Long-Term Care and Community Support Service sectors.

In September, Radiant Care and Niagara College will be taking the partnership to a new level by offering an entirely on-site PSW program at Tabor Manor with some unused rooms being converted into living classrooms, complete with Long-Term Care beds and virtual, electronic residents, as well as direct access to Tabor Manor’s Long-Term Care home and Community Support Service program, in order to fulfill program clinical placement requirements. The innovative curriculum is geared to student needs through modular design, thereby striking a balance between training and work. The first class is scheduled to begin in September, with current enrollment of 24 students. This program will impact clients directly through the provision of contemporary models of care, as well as a steady volume of much-needed skilled workers.

It is through innovative partnerships such as this, that Radiant Care seeks to make an impact in addressing local Health Human Resource challenges for itself and within the broader sector.