By Urica Floyd, Municipal Association’s Staff Associate for Distance Learning
Designing and developing online training for municipal officials is a multifaceted process. As we at the Municipal Association began to create the on-demand training for the Municipal Elected Officials Institute of Government, we took into consideration many factors including officials’ comfort level with technology and their access to technology.
Some of the questions we had to think about were “How will the elected officials navigate and find information?” and “How can we build an experience for the elected officials that they can interact with meaningfully?”
We believe we have answered those questions with the four online courses now available through MEOI. Having these classes available on-demand 24/7 gives elected officials yet another way to access the MEOI sessions without having to travel or wait for the classes held annually at the regional Councils of Government offices.
Councilmember Jan Wiles from Holly Hill recently told us, “I just finished the online course “Forms of Municipal Government.” It was wonderful! First of all, it was the most interesting material so far. But being able to replay parts is a huge plus! A big thanks for having this on demand.”
Over the past year, the Municipal Association has rolled out online versions of four of the five classes offered at the COGs for the MEO Institute – “Basic Budgeting and Municipal Finance,” “Forms of Municipal Government,” and “Municipal Economic Development.” The fourth course, “Municipal Governance and Policy,” premiered this month (read the press release here). The fifth course, “The Freedom of Information Act in SC,” will go live mid-December.
The next in-person training at the COGs, “Municipal Economic Development” and “Forms of Municipal Government,” will be held Thursday, September 18, from 6 – 9 p.m. You can get the full schedule and register here.
For newly elected officials, the free, non-credit class, “The Five Basics of Effective Governing” provides basic information about municipal governance that will be helpful during the first few months in office.