Leadership Issues

This category contains 146 posts

How much teacher autonomy is healthy?

I’m sure you all see a bit of yourself in John Keating, striding across the desktops inspiring the pants off your eager students day in, day out; fighting the straight-jacket of conformity; punks in the world of prog rockers; mavericks defying the powers that be…..  We all want to do our own thing right? To … Continue reading

Dissecting Progress 8. The good, the bad and the ugly.

Now that Progress 8 has been born and looks like it’s here to stay, there’s no use wallowing for too long in outrage at the data-garbage bonkersness of it all.  We might all agree that averaging out every child’s achievements across the school via a super-convoluted and arbitrary algorithm to generate a single number with … Continue reading

More carrot and more stick; more love, more warmth, more discipline.

Ahead of the start of this term, I was reflecting on where we need to go next to raise standards at Highbury Grove.  Everywhere I look to find schools that are doing better than we are by some measure I see that they appear to be more disciplined; they secure stronger engagement with their expectations; … Continue reading

A Free School on our doorstep? I have some questions….

  Just before the end of the summer term, I was tipped off that an architect’s website was showing the development pictured above.  They suggested it was to include a 750 place secondary, a 250 place sixth form and residential units.  I contacted the Local Authority officers who knew nothing about it.  Subsequently, this development … Continue reading

More Grammars? Bad idea. But selection has many guises…

So, the end of a ban on new grammar schools is under serious consideration. Crucially, this is significantly different to thinking of a full scale ‘return of grammar schools’ or introducing any more county-wide selection systems.  Nevertheless, if the question is ‘should we have more grammar schools?’ the short answer has to be a firm NO – in … Continue reading

Putting the OfSTED Framework to good use.

Recently we ran a useful OfSTED planning session with my SLT and some key governors to prepare the ground for next year.  We’re hugely likely to be inspected and we thought that, with new governors and refreshed SLT, it was time to revisit the framework together.  I take pride in our stance on OfSTED – … Continue reading

Research Evidence that has shaped what we do. #rEdYork

— My presentation at ResearchEd in York was an attempt to outline some of the research that has had a direct or indirect influence on our practice at Highbury Grove.  Here is a summary. The ideas we are working on at HGS include the following list; many of the ideas come from blogs. I’ve written about … Continue reading

Our School Development Plan Priorities 2016-7

  It’s that time of year when we’re looking ahead, planning for next year and beyond, trying to reorganise and regroup so that we’re moving forward.  As ever, we’re ambitious for what we can achieve and we’re trying move forward on lots of fronts.  Here are our School Development Plan headlines (the full plan is … Continue reading

Rethinking Success in the Post-Gaming Zero Sum Era

  My sense is that people across the education system have yet to fully appreciate the implications of the slow-creep bell-curve hold that’s been applied to school outcomes. Talking to folk from OfQual on a couple of occasions recently, they have reiterated the view that, even in systems regarded as successful, year on year improvement might … Continue reading

Great Teaching: Informed wisdom in the heat of every day practice. #EducationFest 2016

  Here are the slides from my talk at the Education Festival at Wellington.   The thrust of my talk was sharing the process I’ve been on as a teacher and leader in my school, helping teachers (and myself) to develop the most appropriate knowledge and strategies – the informed wisdom – needed to make … Continue reading

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