Recruiting for alignment; Resetting culture; What bubbles have taught us; Preparing for September.

Elroy Cahill, Claudenia Williams, Bhavin Tailor (Kingsley Academy, AET), Sharifa Lee (Dorney School); Mide Ola-Said (Ark John Keats); Katherine Brown et al. (Greenshaw Learning Trust)

Hello everyone,

With the DfE secondary guidance coming out (a tad late) and pubs opening (perhaps a bit early), this week seems to be all about timing.

With that in mind, we have something to help you look ahead to the short, medium and long terms. And we take a brief look back too to remind us how far we’ve come.

I hope you find it useful.


👋 If you’re a new subscriber, or you’ve joined us from a webinar, welcome.

⏪ Catch up with previous newsletters, podcasts and webinars via the archive at the bottom.


This week:

🎥 Webinar: Tales of Turnaround: Recruiting for Alignment

💬 Live chat: ‘Team Up! Thursday’ Resetting Culture in September

🎧 Podcast: So how’s ‘re-opening’ been? Bubble learnings

⏪  Catch up: Preparing for September Opening: Ask Us Anything

🌐 Community News: Last call for applications


🎥 Tales of Turnaround: Recruiting for Alignment

Great organisations are the ones who make sure they have the right people on the bus and in the right seats.

But how do you get the right people on the bus, especially when facing chaos?

In February 2019, Elroy Cahill became the 7th Headteacher at Kingsley Academy in just 6 years.

The academy was a serious cause for concern with a track record of under-performance and weak leadership.

18 months later:

  • Year 7 numbers have risen to over 150 for September (from 70)

  • No temporary or supply staff for the first time since the school opened in 2013 (previously 50%)

  • 97% of staff have confidence in leadership and 96% feel proud to work at Kingsley (up from a worrying 64% and 31% respectively)

  • Rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted in October 2019 (following two successive RI judgements)

How? By getting the right people on the bus. By recruiting for alignment.

Join us to find how they did it and access the resources that helped them.

📅 Tuesday 7th July

🕕 6pm

Save my spot


💬 ‘Team Up! Thursday’ Resetting Culture in September

  • What steps are you taking to create time for a cultural and behavioural reset? 

  • How are you planing to engage pupils in thinking about the culture and behaviour you want to see in classrooms? 

  • How are you planning to engage staff in thinking about the culture and behaviour you would want to see amongst each other? 

  • What resources are you working on or planing to communicate clearly?

Join us for ‘Team Up! Thursday’ (live chat) to discuss your thoughts, concerns and plans around these questions.

Hosted by Mide Ola-Said (Vice Principal, Ark John Keats).

📅 Thursday 9th July

🕕 7pm

Count me in


🎧 So how’s ‘re-opening’ been?

Sharifa Lee is the Deputy Headteacher at Dorney School, Windsor.

In this episode - the penultimate of Series 3 - she shares how their bubbles were planned, how they changed and why.

She also reflects on what she and her team have learned and what she wishes they’d done differently.

Tune in to learn how she’ll be applying her learning in September and beyond Covid-19.

👂 Subscribe on Spotify | iTunes | Stitcher | Libsyn | TuneIn 🔉

⏲️ 14 minute listen

📖 Access links to plus bonus content from the episode here.

If you are a serving school leader or teacher, access our premium content for free, for a limited time here. Soon this will be the only place you can access it.

Listen


⏪ Preparing for September Opening: Ask Us Anything

On Thursday 2nd July, Greenshaw Learning Trust hosted a panel discussion to share their reflections and ideas from the DfE guidance for wider opening of schools in September. Questions they covered:

  • How are schools going to approach staggered starts?

  • What will you do during registration time?

  • How will you reduce the flow of students around the school?

  • How will you deal with break times/lunchtimes?

  • What will be your expected cleaning routines?

  • How are we going to approach catching up on lost learning?

  • Are you going to reduce the curriculum offer for pupils?

So far 730+ of you have tuned in.

If you haven’t yet, it is 🔥, so…

Catch up


🌐 Congratulations! Our Greenshaw School Improvement Cohort 2020/21. Last chance to apply.

We’ve been blown away by the quality of applications we received for the Greenshaw School Improvement Community - bringing together more than 300 leaders and teachers, from over 140 schools and 80 Local Authorities, all truly committed to creating positive change together!

If you haven’t applied, here’s your chance.

This post will guide you through the details of the programme and the application process.

Recruitment deadline is Sunday 12th July, but space is limited, so the sooner the better.

If you have applied, invite a colleague.

During the programme we will be working together. Outcomes can greatly improve by having your peers also take part with you.

Share this post on your social media or directly with a colleague.

15th July - the online community opens.


Thanks for reading and playing your part in making education the place we all know it can be.

Speak soon,

@NiallAlcock


If you found this useful and thought of colleagues and friends, who would too, share it with them by hitting the button below. Thanks!

Share


🆕 New here? Catch up with previous editions, podcasts and webinars via the archive

️️❤️ If you believe in collaboration, give us a ‘cheer’ below.

Activism takes action; How to map talent; What hundreds of leaders are doing

Chantelle Clarke (Frederick Bremer School); David Ellison (United Learning); Greenshaw Learning Trust

Hello everyone,

This weekend was meant to be Glastonbury weekend. Whilst 200,000 people (myself included) will be gutted not to be there, these days everyone can enjoy incredible sets on the iPlayer from anywhere.

How does this relate to schools you might ask?

There is incredible stuff happening in schools up and down the country. But not everyone can access it equitably. That’s why the We Are In Beta team finds and shares great practice at scale, so we can all learn from it.

We - schools - Are In Beta - always learning.


👋 If you’re a new subscriber, or you’ve joined us from a webinar, welcome.

⏪ Catch up with previous newsletters, podcasts and webinars via the archive at the bottom.


This week:

🎧 Podcast: Activism takes action

🎥 Webinar: Diamonds in the rough: mapping talent

🌐 Community News: time’s running out to join hundreds of other school leaders


🎧 Podcast: Activism takes action

As an organisation, We Are In Beta did not say anything publicly to show our solidarity with Black Lives Matter in the immediate aftermath of George Floyd’s murder. We should have.

Chantelle Clarke, Head of Department (Frederick Bremer School) and host of Black Women Working Podcast shares her thoughts with our producer, Jay, and challenges us to take action.

She tells us what we should all do now to tackle racism and what we can all do, consistently and constantly, to ensure activism takes action.

👂 Subscribe on Spotify | iTunes | Stitcher | Libsyn | TuneIn 🔉

⏲️ 16 minute listen

📖 Access links to plus bonus content from the episode here.

If you are a serving school leader or teacher, access our premium content for free, for a limited time here. Soon this will be the only place you can access it.

Listen


🎥 Webinar: Diamonds in the rough: mapping talent

As the new academic year approaches, you’ll be thinking about how you get the best from your team. You might be asking questions like:

  • How do you identify your high potential and high performing colleagues?

  • How to do you know which staff are performing less well?

  • How do you find out why?

  • How do you guarantee they get the right CPD to thrive?

  • How do you define ‘performance’ and ‘potential’?

  • How do you avoid this process being used as a stick of accountability?

David Ellison is a Primary Executive Principal at United Learning Trust, across three primary schools in East London.

As an Assistant, and later Deputy Head, he was part of the team that transformed Foxfield Primary School from Special Measures to Outstanding.  He and his team also led Goresbrook School from Requires Improvement to a borderline Outstanding in just two years.

When asked about his proudest achievements, it's the people he’s developed he recalls. He has mentored no fewer than six of his colleagues to become headteachers. 

Join us to find out how and access the resources he uses to do it.

📅 Tuesday 30th June

🕑 2pm

Save my spot


🌐 We Are In Beta Community News

On 17th June, we ran a webinar in partnership with Greenshaw Learning Trust where they shared how they keep the complex simple. Over 840 of you have tuned into watch. Thank you.

If you haven’t watched, catch up here.

Together we announced a brand new, online programme, which will show you how they’ve tackled 10 persistent problems to achieve their remarkable school turnarounds.

Each module has:

📚 Pre-reading
🎥 Webinar
📎 School improvement resources
⭐ Challenges to trial back in your school
🎤 ‘Ask Us Anything’ panel discussions with Greenshaw leaders
💬 Direct live chats with fellow learners and Greenshaw leaders

Open to all academies and local authority schools but spaces limited. Group applications with at least 2 colleagues from the same school/MAT favoured.

Applications closing and programme starting soon.

Learn more + apply


Thanks for reading and playing your part in making education the place we all know it can be.

Speak soon,

@NiallAlcock


If you found this useful and thought of colleagues and friends, who would too, share it with them by hitting the button below. Thanks!

Share


🆕 New here? Catch up with previous editions, podcasts and webinars via the archive

️️❤️ If you believe in collaboration, give us a ‘cheer’ below.

10 persistent problems & how Greenshaw tackle them; rebranding attendance; what AP can teach us about building belonging

Greenshaw Learning Trust; Anita Woodward-Benn (University of Brighton Academies Trust); Caron Johnson (The Rowans AP)

Hello everyone!

At the end of a week when schools were given a lot of money to fund catch up tuition, which is turning out to be not so free after all, We Are In Beta is in your inbox announcing something very cool which absolutely is.


👋 If you’re a new subscriber, or you’ve joined us from our webinars, a very warm welcome to you!

⏪ Catch up with previous newsletters, podcasts and webinars via the archive at the bottom.


This week:

🌐 Community News: a first of its kind school improvement programme

🎧 Podcast: Rebranding Attendance

🎥 Webinar: Building Belonging: what can we all learn from AP?


🌐 We Are In Beta Community News

As many of you know, this week we hosted a webinar for 650+ colleagues in partnership with The Greenshaw Learning Trust.

Will Smith (CEO), Ben Parnell (Director of Education) and Izzy Ambrose (Headteacher, Yate Academy) shared how they keep the complex simple to achieve their impressive outcomes. If you missed it, catch up via the button below.

Together we also announced a brand new, online programme, which will show you how they’ve tackled 10 persistent problems to achieve their remarkable school turnarounds.

Each module has:

📚 Pre-reading
🎥 Webinar
📎 School improvement resources
⭐ Challenges to trial back in your school
🎤 ‘Ask Us Anything’ panel discussions with Greenshaw leaders
💬 Direct live chats with fellow learners and Greenshaw leaders

Open to all academies and local authority schools but spaces limited. Group applications with at least 2 colleagues from the same school/MAT favoured.

Starting soon. Apply early to avoid missing out.

Learn more + apply


🎧 Rebranding Attendance

You could say attendance officers have a reputation for being the rule keepers, the punishment issuers.

But Anita Woodward-Benn - Attendance Manager, University of Brighton Academies Trust - thinks differently. She thinks attendance practitioners could and should be the front line of support for families.

Why? How? Tune in to find out.

👂 Subscribe on Spotify | iTunes | Stitcher | Libsyn | TuneIn 🔉

⏲️ 17 minute listen

📖 Access links to resources and organisations Anita mentions plus bonus content from the episode here.

If you are a serving school leader or teacher, access our premium content for free, for a limited time here. Soon this will be the only place you can access it.

Listen


🎥 Webinar: Caron Johnson, The Rowans AP Academy. Building Belonging: what can we all learn from AP?

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that togetherness is vital.

If many children continue to learn remotely, especially those who are shielding, we will all need work with parents more closely than ever.

When Caron Johnson arrived at what was then called Silverbank in 2009, there was no curriculum, no enrichment and incredibly low expectations.

Now The Rowans AP Academy is graded outstanding by Ofsted and achieves outcomes significantly higher than national average despite the local challenges of high deprivation, low aspirations and high exclusion rates.

The school is also leading the national conversation about how we serve the most vulnerable learners as part of The Difference programme.

Join us to find out how they’ve done it by building belonging using an ‘assets-based’ approach.

📆 Tuesday 23rd June 2020

🕕 6.00pm

Don’t miss the resources Caron will share with attendees.

Save my spot


Thanks for reading and playing your part in making education the place we all know it can be.

Speak soon,

@NiallAlcock


If you found this useful and thought of colleagues and friends, who would too, share it with them by hitting the button below. Thanks!

Share


🆕 New here? Catch up with previous editions, podcasts and webinars via the archive

️️❤️ If you believe in collaboration, give us a ‘cheer’ below.

How to keep the complex simple; an offer from Greenshaw Learning Trust; what teachers think about online CPD

Izzy Ambrose, Will Smith, Ben Parnell (Greenshaw Learning Trust); Ruby Judge, Sahrifa Lee & Nikki Waite (various)

Hello everyone!

Primary colleagues, I hope the first week ‘back’ went well. Secondary colleagues, I hope you’re all set for next week.

👋 If you’re a new subscriber, or you’ve joined us from our webinars, a very warm welcome to you!

⏪ Catch up with previous newsletters, podcasts and webinars via the archive. Link at the bottom.


This week:

🎥 Webinar: Keeping the complex simple: the Greenshaw Learning Trust model

🎧 Podcast: What do teachers say about online CPD?


🎥 Webinar: Keeping the complex simple: The Greenshaw Learning Trust Model

School improvement is hard. Far from being a linear trajectory, there are many twists and turns along the way.

With so many competing priorities, the risk is that complexity and a lack of clarity can limit the the chances of success.

The Greenshaw Learning Trust has achieved some remarkable turnarounds by keeping the complex simple.

Join 400+ attendees to learn what they prioritise across their schools and what that looked like in practice under Izzy Ambrose’s leadership at Yate Academy.

Attendees will also receive an exclusive invitation to access 12 months of Greenshaw school improvement support. This is one not pass up.

📆 Wednesday 17th June 2020

🕕 10.30am

Save my spot


🎧 Podcast: What do teachers say about online CPD?

During lockdown, there's been a lot of online CPD happening. There's plenty of research about what good CPD and what good online learning looks like.

But we don’t often hear from the teachers and leaders who've been attending these sessions. What do they have to say? 

We spoke to three school leaders - Sharifah Lee , Ruby Judge and Nikki Waite - about their experience of attending over 145 (yes, that’s 145!!) online CPD sessions over the past few weeks.

Disclaimer: this is not science but hopefully it will be helpful for CPD leaders when designing and delivering online sessions over the coming weeks and months.

👂 Subscribe on Spotify | iTunes | Stitcher | Libsyn | TuneIn 🔉

⏲️ 12 minute listen

📖 Access links to resources mentioned plus bonus content from the episode here.

If you are a serving school leader or teacher, access our premium content for free, for a limited time here. Soon this will be the only place you can access it.

Listen


Thanks for reading and playing your part in making education the place we all know it can be.

Speak soon,

@NiallAlcock


If you found this useful and thought of colleagues and friends, who would too, share it with them by hitting the button below.

Share


🆕 New here? Catch up with previous editions, podcasts and webinars via the archive

️️❤️ If you like what we’re doing, give us a ‘cheer’ below.

White Ally; Critical Mass; Avoiding Team Toxins.

Allana Gay, Patrick Ottley O'Connor, Pran Patel & Penny Rabiger; George McMillan.

Hello everyone,

We all know what’s been happening in America, and around the world, as recent events have reignited the fight against racism.

On the We Are In Beta podcast we have had some really impactful conversations about racial inequity and allyship.

But that was last year.

If nothing changes, we’ll be having the same conversations the next time something happens.

If we want to change things, it’s important to remember that tweeting isn’t enough, marching isn’t enough and “not being racist” yourself isn’t enough. 

The two podcast episodes below aren’t enough either. 

What they are is a starting point for those with power and privilege to think about how we benefit from the system and what we need to do to change that system.

Please, listen to them below.


👋 If you’re a new subscriber, thanks for joining us.

⏪ Catch up with previous newsletters, podcasts and webinars via the archive. Link at the bottom.


This week:

🎧 Podcasts: BAME Leadership - Critical Mass & White Ally

💡Resources: Anti-racsim

🎥 Webinar: Team Toxins: mistakes leaders make and how to avoid them


🎧 Podcasts: BAME Leadership

Below you’ll find podcasts featuring these people. Listen to their voices.

Allana Gay (Headteacher, Vita Et Pax Prep School and Co-Founder of BAMEed), Penny Rabiger (Founder Member, BAMEed), Pran Patel, teacher and equity activist, Patrick Ottley O’Connor (Exec. Principal, North Liverpool Academy)


🎧 Critical Mass

This episode underlines the importance of achieving critical mass to make change happen, the impact of low expectations and the essentialness of representation.

Allana Gay shares her personal story. She discusses her childhood, her leadership journey and the similar challenges she overcame during both.

Listen


🎧 White Ally

White allies have access to spaces people from BAME backgrounds don’t. They are essential to bringing the conversation to a wider audience.

Here Patrick Ottley O’Connor shares his experience of becoming comfortable with being uncomfortable challenging racism. Penny Rabiger shows us how and when to call it out. Pran Patel teaches us about power, the racist/anti-racist spectrum and gives his advice about how to be an ally.

Listen


💡Anti-racsim

If you have not spoken out about racism yet, perhaps because you’re afraid of getting it wrong, don’t be.

Accept that you will misunderstand and be challenged. Trying and failing is better than not trying at all.

We must educate ourselves and educate others.

Three resources we have found particularly useful:

Please share them far and wide.


🎥 Webinar: Team Toxins: mistakes leaders make and how to avoid them. George McMillan, Harris Federation.

The performance of your team and the success of your school are inextricably linked. To achieve success their development is vital. So is yours.

An essential part of that is engendering trust, truly understanding each other and having really good conversations.

Join on our next webinar, to learn how George McMillan builds effective teams, identifies toxins that can hamper their development and uses the antidotes to avoid them.

📆 Tuesday 9th June 2020

🕕 6.00pm

Save my spot


Thanks for reading and playing your part in making education the place we all know it can be.

Speak soon,

@NiallAlcock


If you found this useful and thought of colleagues and friends, who would too, share it with them by hitting the button below.

Share


🆕 New here? Catch up with previous editions, podcasts and webinars via the archive

👂 Listen and subscribe on iTunes | Spotify | Stitcher | Libsyn | TuneIn 🔉

️️❤️ If you like what we’re doing, give us a ‘cheer’ below.

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