Challenge Partners 2017

Challenge Partners 2017

We feel that it is really healthy to have good partnerships with a range of schools and networks both locally and nationally. The biggest network that we are part of is ‘Challenge Partners’. Challenge Partners is built up of schools of all shapes and sizes from across England and the biggest part of the drive is the ‘Quality Assurance Reviews’. Each year we welcome an Ofsted inspector along with 2 senior leaders from other schools and they work with us for 3 days to evaluate and assess our school in the 3 areas of: school improvement, outcomes and teaching and learning. In turn then, 2 senior leaders from our school take part in reviews in other schools during each year. Last term Mr Hamshar completed a review in Devon and I am looking forward to completing a review in Bristol in the next few weeks. The reviews are extremely in depth and both the reviewers, and the schools being reviewed, always come away feeling like they have learnt something and further developed as a professional which in turn strengthens schools.

 

This is the 4th year that we have had a review, and this one like the others was extremely successful. Our review included a haul through all of our assessment data, observations of all of the teachers, book scrutinies, meetings with pupils, meetings with leaders regarding their subject areas and meetings with senior leaders. The report is written as the 3 days progress and gives plenty of opportunity for healthy debate! The report is split into WWW’s (what went wells) and EBI’s (even better ifs). Our full report can be found on our website under ‘information about the school’- please have a read! The thing that is most important to us is that the children are getting a great deal both academically, socially and emotionally and that the schools continues to get stronger and stronger. We were really pleased that the judgement for school improvement was lifted to ‘outstanding’ this year and that the judgements for outcomes and teaching and learning whilst remaining ‘good’ sat on the fence between good and outstanding.  The inspector repeated several times during his visit that we are now working from ‘a tower of strength’. With all of the government changes over the past few years, we were extremely pleased with this and very happy that our EBI’s in these areas can be easily addressed.

My proudest moment was hearing how proud all of the children who spoke to the reviewers were of all aspects of their school (no bribery involved!). I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the staff for excellent teamwork yet again. Challenge Partners is as it’s name suggests ‘challenging’, and always feels a bit like a pleasure pain thing which endeavours to push our comfort zones….but then this all helps us to be ‘the best we can be’.