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The Joy of Teaching SRE

I’ve written about teaching SRE before – in this post and in this piece for the Guardian Teacher Network.  It remains one of my favourite lessons to teach for lots of reasons.  Mainly it is because students are so curious and happy to be engaging with the content which is very rewarding.  It feels like … Continue reading

Dear Justine. Some thoughts…

Dear Justine Congratulations on your appointment as Secretary of State.  I’m quietly optimistic and looking forward to seeing how education policy develops under your leadership.  You’ve got a genuine opportunity to create a significant legacy; without question, there is plenty to do! I wrote to Nicky Morgan from this blog twice last year – you … 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

Emerging KS3 Curriculum Map and Exhibition Plan

Our Head of School for KS3 has been working with subjects leaders to pull together  a map of our curriculum.  This idea is to look for links, to plan future links, and, more routinely, keep tabs on what is going on in our students’ learning lives. All too often the detail of the curriculum 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

Schools should be more teacher-centred.

The idea that schools should be more teacher centred has been gathering momentum in my thinking.   In fact, the whole education system should be more teacher centred.  Ridiculously, to some folk, that will sound regressive  – because we’re supposed to say that everything we do is for the children.  Well, of course.  Schools are set … Continue reading

Tweets that have flown.

As part of the process of recording what happens via this blog and my twitter feed, this is a  compilation of the tweets that have had the biggest response. It’s a mix of commentary on education and brushes with big-hitting scientists.  And, biggest of all, a student’s attempt to circumvent the rules on mobile phones. … Continue reading

Culture + Systems: The Spirit and The Letter

This is a slide I’ve used multiple times in various CPD sessions.  It’s a theme I return to over and over.   In numerous aspects of school leadership, I feel it’s important to consider the need to develop both the systems and the culture within which they operate, explicitly, deliberately and simultaneously.  Systems don’t work … Continue reading

Too much data; too many meetings: stop talking and do something.

In recent weeks, I’ve been thinking about the huge imbalance between the time and effort we spend identifying issues relative to the time and effort we spend doing something to address them.  There are two main areas where this imbalance comes into play:  assessment data and ‘referrals’. Here’s a thought experiment (One I’ve used before): … Continue reading

Weak arguments and conspiracy theories.

  In general I think we’re in a good place regarding educational debates.  There are lots of areas where people hold different points of view and I feel that, compared to the pre-twitter , pre-Gove era, there’s a much livelier climate of discussion and debate about what education is for and what constitutes effective or … Continue reading

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