As a School Leader I need to be constantly aiming to improve the School. These improvements may be to do with the school building, training staff, introducing new teaching methods, purchasing resources, build partnership and a thousand and one other methods.
All of the changes are ultimately put in place so that every single one of our pupils achieves to their maximum potential whilst they are with us.
There is no 100% guarantee that a change will result in improved pupil outcomes and so the changes need to be based on proven research and results. If someone tells me that their latest resource will ensure all children will succeed, I will ask them for the evidence that proves this. Really the question is ‘What will be the cost and will it have an impact on the pupils’ achievement’.
I am sure you will understand that I have many sellers contacting the School to offer me a ‘deal’ on one thing or another and very few of them will actually make it into the School for a meeting with myself or other members of staff. The reason for this is that I much prefer to go and seek out the best practice in other educational establishments.
‘School to School’ working is an identified means of improving the work that goes on within schools. This is whereby a school that does something particularly well allows another school’s staff to come into their school and view the excellent practice. It is the epitome of ‘Together we can all succeed’.
I have been fortunate enough to have recently viewed some other schools in Cardiff, Pontypridd and London. I have been to primary schools, secondary schools and special schools. I have gathered fantastic ideas about resources, structures and, most importantly, improving teaching and learning.
I am able to identify those aspects of other schools that are currently better than ours. I am then able to bring some of these ideas back to our School to implement them. However, I often see things in other schools that we do better within our own School and therefore changes are only made if they are better than we already have.
It is also important to note that it is not only myself and other Llanedeyrn Primary School staff going out to other schools; we are also used to having other school staff come to us for ideas and for their professional development. The fact that we have so many people coming to visit our School demonstrates that our reputation is growing for the good work that we undertake at Llanedeyrn Primary School.
Again, these teachers have been from other South Wales Schools and of course teachers recently visited from Rwanda. You may have read the recent South Wales Echo article on the visit and I am pleased to say that the School has been awarded The International Schools’ Award for this work.
This sharing of good and excellent practice is what makes us all better and we will relentlessly be continuing this model of school improvement. That includes pupils, learning support assistants, the school secretary, the caretaker, the teachers and the headteacher. All of us need to be the best that we can be in order to provide the best teaching and learning that we can.
Together we can all succeed.