Our Approach to School Improvement
We believe that effective school leadership is critical to school improvement and that our principals have a pivotal role in setting direction, creating a positive school culture and supporting the collective staff body in securing sustainable improvement.
As a Trust, we support all of our leaders in developing two critical leadership concepts: instructional/ pedagogical and transformational. We firmly believe that effective leadership will promote strong academic outcomes for pupils through placing teaching and learning at the heart of school improvement while also creating a positive school culture needed to foster sustainable improvement and within which both pupils and staff can flourish.
Our Executive Leadership Group and Primary and Secondary Leadership Groups are well-established forums which support collaboration, the dissemination of effective practice, school-to-school support and the alignment of structures and cultures with ‘vision’ and ‘direction’. Other networks, including Primary and Secondary Assessment Groups, Curriculum Focus Group and Secondary School Improvement Board provide opportunities for senior leaders from across the organisation to contribute to academy and Trust-wide improvement.
In recognition of the plethora of emerging challenges our leaders are facing: the effects of poverty; the breakdown of communities; reduced funding; pressure to secure improvements in standards and outcomes, we have commissioned the support of an experienced educationalist to provide a bespoke leadership coaching programme for our academy leaders and members of the senior leadership teams. While providing colleagues with the opportunity to find solutions to operational challenges, it is also designed to develop their own leadership capacity.
The Directorate of Effectiveness
The Directorate of Academy Effectiveness provides strategic support to academy leaders through targeted support and bespoke development. We place immense importance on the use of educational research to draw on and inform our support programme and to provide innovation in teaching and learning at all levels. The team works across our academies supporting the development of high quality teaching and learning, to ensure our staff are able to provide our young people with the best learning experience possible.
Our school review programme which is led by the Director of Education and supported by the Executive Principals and a peer head enable a systematic and focussed evaluation of educational provision and support the validation of academy self-evaluation processes.
The Director of Education/Co-CEO works closely with leadership teams to provide strategic leadership, clear guidance and effective management for all aspects of performance, standards and effectiveness of educational provision. She works in partnership with the Executive Principals and academy leaders, ensuring that their self-evaluation is accurate and robust and leads to clear actions.
The Executive Principal (Primary), works across the five primary academies to ensure progress has been made on Trust wide priorities, to secure improved outcomes and to support leaders in building professional cultures within their academies. Working closely in partnership with the Co-CEO/Director of Education, she supports leaders in ensuring that they have robust academy development plans with clear, measurable actions.
The Strategic Lead for Assessment works closely with academy leadership teams to develop and implement methods of assessment and data management in order to drive up standards and levels of performance. He focuses on ensuring that assessment and recording strategies support students’ personal and educational achievement and that the information helps motivate staff and students to greater success. A key element of his role involves transforming data into useful information that can help set the institutions’ strategic priorities so that their improvement is focused and rapid.
A small team of lead practitioners, most of whom have been awarded SLE (specialist leader of education) status, work across the primary and secondary academies to develop individual colleagues’ pedagogy and practice and to lead on aspects of continuing professional development.