“Actually it’s useful sometimes to step in”

How best to use a twenty-minute mentor meeting with a new teacher?  We recently filmed the approach taken by Izzy Leahy (’10 Ambassador) to support first year Teach First participant Sam Bower at Harris Academy Greenwich.  Izzy’s main approach was coaching Sam, supporting him to reflect upon his teaching and reach his own conclusions; she also included…

Celebrating success and building teams at Reach Academy

We visited Reach Academy in Feltham recently to film a professional development session after school.  We’ll show the session in a future post, but first we wanted to highlight how Ed Vainker (’03 Ambassador) began.  Vainker set aside the first few minutes for teachers to share recent successes, inviting them to link their achievements to…

Teachers and Teaching Assistants: A team is more than the sum of its parts

‘I have a teaching assistant? What do I do now?’…Does this ring a bell? Teaching assistants (TAs) are a valuable resource and the majority of teachers will work alongside them in the classroom. Their in-depth knowledge and experience should be a gift to hard-pressed teachers but EEF research has shown that many teachers do not,…

Four ways to create a positive departmental culture

Middle leaders are often described as the key figures in making schools run effectively. Part of their power stems from creating a departmental culture, and the effect this has on the way a team of adults works.  It was fascinating to learn about how Dani Quinn (‘10 Ambassador) has sought to do this within her…

Pastoral leadership: purpose, positivity, prioritisation and progress

What does it take to be described as a “great Head of Year” by colleagues, in only your second year in that role? We asked Susannah Meersand, who works at a school in the West Midlands, about the challenges that responsibility for Year 10 has brought her, and how she has approached them. Susannah’s students…