We have been working with our Strategic Partners and Alliance Schools on initiatives that will help support not only the children in our own school, but all children in our local area. We have dedicated teams drawn from our Strategic Partners who are working to develop the areas of our remit. These teams each have a senior leader who will lead on elements of the Teaching School agenda which are:
- Initial Teacher Training (ITT)
- School to school support
- Leadership Development
- Research and Development
We hold regular meetings for the Strategic Partner Head teachers or representatives and termly meetings for the Team Leaders. The Team Leaders themselves hold twice termly meetings with their own group in order to plan for the delivery of key initiatives that form the basis of our Action Plan.
One new initiative is the opportunity for teachers who are in leadership roles to apply to Teaching Schools to become Specialist Leaders of Education (SLEs). An SLE will be tasked to work with colleagues at leadership level on aspects of their role. This term we have interviewed and recruited 8 SLEs who will be deployed across schools in our alliance; this will support and develop the leadership of Teaching and Learning and help to raise standards in our area. Millais, as the Teaching School, has a role in the brokering and deployment of the SLEs ensuring that their expertise matches local need. The School to School Support team will be looking at ways of brokering support between schools and on developing standardised protocols for the exchange and use of teachers in outreach work.
The agenda for our CPD group is to develop a programme of CPD and JPD opportunities that directly matches the locality need. They are also tasked with ensuring that all alliance schools recognise the value of the Quality Mark for CPD leadership and work towards acquiring this as an accreditation over the coming months.
The ITT group will be looking closely at the training and recruitment of ITT mentors and seeking ways to provide a more standardised experience of ITT through the sharing of good practice, to include shared induction events at the start of placements. Wider alliance projects include successfully bidding for School Direct PGCE places; we will be working with our HEI partners, the Universities of Brighton and Sussex, with our PGCE placement students in the primary phase and in physics, mathematics and MFL in the secondary phase. This is a new phase in ITT training and will give us the opportunity to be at the forefront of this new development. As an alliance we are also involved in a pilot project being run by the University of Brighton to run a new Physics with Maths PGCE course. This new physics with mathematics pilot course will start from September 2012 with the aim of increasing the number of physics trainees to 1,150 in total across the country. At Millais we have also been involved in recruiting PGCE history students in collaboration with the University of Sussex enabling them to have a school based interview experience.
The Leadership Development team will be working on aspects of leadership in our locality to include a focus on Leaders Programmes at different levels. We are seeking to offer masters level credits for our leadership courses held locally.
The Research and Development team will be working on a range of projects to put action research at the heart of the work of the alliance.
Any school who is interested in joining the alliance needs to be willing to agree to the fundamental philosophy and ethos of working in collaboration with other schools. They would need to sign an agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) which outlines ways of working together. New members cannot become Strategic Partners, however, members of staff from that school would be able to participate on one of the teams to deliver on the Teaching School agenda should a place be available.
Teaching School Director/ Deputy Head