What a year we have had! Following hot on the heels of the Helenswood Academy in Hastings, we are delighted to announce two new Designated OLEVI Centres – The Billericay School in Essex and St Chad’s in Oldham
“The OLEVI programmes were an inspiration. They enabled us to understand and recognise what good and outstanding teaching looks like in the classroom.”
Tony Ward, Director of the Billericay Educational Consortium, tells of his school’s journey to becoming a DOC.
“Over three years ago we decided that the focus of all our staff development should be to empower teachers to develop their class practice. It was important that our staff were developed from within and grew an internal sense of leadership.
The OLEVI programmes were an inspiration. They enabled us to understand and recognise what ‘Good’ and ‘Outstanding’ teaching feels like in the classroom. This started a cultural change within the school, which has involved all staff and is now embedded in our everyday work.
For us, the focus on improvement and engagement in the classroom through collaboration has resulted in us reconsidering our approach to coaching practice. Coaching now takes place both within and across departments and teams. More sustainable gains have been made as those coached move their own area of expertise forward and coach others. We believe a coaching culture is the way forward and continue to embed this practice as ‘the norm’. We have not only shifted the culture of our own school but through the Teaching School Alliance (TSA) we have been able to share this philosophy with teachers in other schools in the local area.
By using the OLEVI programmes, culture and ethos, and being part of the OLEVI network, we have empowered other schools to achieve a similar impact. The enthusiasm is infectious and by continuing to develop relationships with delegates after the programmes have finished, we have established a network that works to promote this culture across our area and beyond.
We very much see ourselves as the role model for the OLEVI ethos in Essex, Southend and Thurrock – our TSA sub-region. We are committed to our vision of working with colleagues within and beyond our partnership schools, across all phases of education, and build relationships to foster a culture of sharing and collaboration. This enables us to continue to identify and develop current knowledge and expertise, and strive to work innovatively and creatively in order to maximize engagement and realise a lasting legacy that impacts on day-to-day practice.
The expansion of the network is exciting and will provide recipricol advantages. The exchange of ideas and discussion about what really matters through the DR ICE mantra will benefit other schools and enrich us. In achieving DOC status we can further grow the schools we work with to provide first class teaching and learning for all our students.”
Next term we will hear from St Chad’s