You're deputy headteacher at Malet Lambert School in Hull. What makes the school special?
Malet Lambert has a long and proud history, dating back to 1932. Once a grammar school, it became a community comprehensive school in 1968, and continues to be true to the word ‘comprehensive’ some 48 years later. The recently-created, formal Multi Academy Trust partnership with South Hunsley School, their Sixth Form College and Hunsley Primary School ensures an exciting future ahead for Malet Lambert. From our thorough transition process in Year 6, through to the close mentoring and support for our pupils taking public examinations in Year 11, we put the needs of individual pupils at the heart of everything we do.
As a school, we pride ourselves upon having high aspirations. This will ensure that all of our pupils meet their potential by creating a safe, yet vibrant learning environment, which sees first-class teaching and learning every single day. We are very fortunate to have such a caring, skilled and dedicated set of teachers, support staff and directors here at Malet Lambert - ultimate professionals who are dedicated to the pupils. I have a vision for Malet Lambert to be a school where pupils are happy, whilst learning and achieving exceptionally well in a safe environment.
Starting out as a regional ambassador for the organisation, you're now director of National Careers Week [5th - 10th March 2018]. What led you to a career specialising so strongly in careers?
Careers education information advice and guidance has always been one of my core values. The more I have experienced and worked in this area, the more I have come to the conclusion that this is a complex area, and not a straightforward at all. It requires all of us to work together in order to support our young people to make informed decisions. We all have a role to play in helping to prepare them for their futures. That’s why I am taking an active role in Careers Week.
When we, the directors of NCW CIC, saved National Careers Week from administration, it was always our intention to protect and preserve it for the careers community we serve. Ethics and values are integral part to why we all got involved in National Careers Week. We passionately believe that by working together we can make a difference. We believe in the power of Careers, Education, Information, Advice and Guidance as a driver of change within society, improving life choices and empowering people to take control of their future. By becoming a CIC (community interest company) we will be able us to reinvest, create and innovate in order to support the celebration of best practice in careers. This is an exciting time for National Careers Week and as a CIC, we are sourcing partners who share our values to support us in developing our offering and to work together to take #NCW2018 to the next level.
How do you go about ensuring a strong school community?
Community is at the heart of what we do at Malet Lambert. We aim to serve our community and pupils every day by providing the very best education and enrichment. You can only create a strong community through developing culture, ethos and values. It also means being open to opportunities and collaboration. We are part of a number of local and national networks, including colleges, training providers and businesses. Essentially it's about working together.
Words really don't do it justice - when you tour the school you can really see our community in action.
What advice would you give a school leader for enhancing their CPD?
Your staff are your greatest asset. They deserve the very best professional learning and development. Everyone is different, and therefore your CPD offer should reflect this. One size doesn't fit all, and certainly shouldn't be about making it the same for everyone. My five tips are as follows:
1. Keep the focus on Teaching and Learning.
2. Have a dedicated budget for CPD, and prioritise time for high-quality development.
3. Build capacity to support CPD - you can't do it on your own.
4. Audit your provision - The Teacher Development Network is a great starting point.
5. Remember, CPD is about leadership - how are you modelling effective CPD by continuing to learn and grow?
What do you hope to achieve in the next year?
To continue to work hard for our pupils and community in providing the very best opportunities. Supporting colleagues with high-quality professional development to enable them to do their role to the very best of their ability. I hope to continue to develop and grow as an emerging leader. Being open to learning and developing my own teaching and learning. Remember the hashtag - #alwayslearning!
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