Two Wandsworth schools have entered an alliance to become one of the first teaching schools in the country.
Belleville Primary School and Southfields Community College have, in partnership, become one of the first in the country to be selected for an important new role aimed at further raising standards.
The Belleville and Southfields Alliance has been granted teaching school status – a new designation entitling it to lead training and professional development in schools. The National College for School Leadership had about 1,200 expressions of interest in the first recruitment round and have approved the applications of only 100 schools in England so far. The schools have been invited to the National College’s Learning and Conference Centre in Nottingham in September for a formal induction.
The milestone marks a shift towards school-centred training and development. Teaching schools will be responsible for leading a group of schools and working with other partners (including at least one university), to deliver high quality support for teachers and leaders at all stages in their career.
Jacqueline Valin, Principal at Southfields Community College, said:
“This is fantastic recognition for our outstanding teaching and learning in both the secondary and the primary phases. We are both honoured to have been approved following the rigorous selection process.”
John Grove, Headteacher of Belleville Primary School, said:
“We are extremely excited about being able to further develop our partnerships with other schools, both locally and nationally. We are already working with excellent and highly motivated colleagues and see Teaching School status as an opportunity for schools to work together to have a positive impact on the lives of the children in their care.”
The National College has responsibility for the designation and quality of the teaching schools programme, working closely with the Department for Education (DfE) and Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA). It is expected that the national network will grow to 500 teaching schools by 2014.
Steve Munby, Chief Executive of the National College, said: “To take on this role, teaching schools like the Belleville and Southfields Alliance need to be among the best in the country - outstanding in their own performance and have a track record of raising standards through school-to-school support.
“Over time teaching schools will harness the finest teaching talent in the profession to drive school improvement, and bring real benefits to pupils. Trainees will learn from the best teachers in action and those who want to step up to more senior leadership positions will be exposed to excellent practice within and beyond their immediate school.”
The first year of the programme will be a design and development phase. As they develop, teaching schools working with other schools and universities will help to provide a strong supply of new teachers, develop leaders and the next generation of heads, and support schools in challenging circumstances.
July 17, 2011