Ed Vainker, Executive Headteacher, Reach Academy Feltham - Academic and rigorous or nurturing and cuddly? How to improve progress by investing in relationships with families

  
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Hello listeners!

The eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed I took a break from the usual publishing schedule over Easter. Normal service resumed from now on.

Hello to all you excellent, new subscribers too! You can catch up with previous issues featuring Rob Carpenter, Elroy Cahill, Evelyn Forde and Will Smith here.

I'm delighted to release episode #5 of the We Are In Beta Podcast - an interview with the wonderful Ed Vainker, Executive Headteacher, Reach Academy in Feltham.

He shares how their ‘cradle to career vision’ and investing in family relationships has impacted on pupil progress.

So, take a break or schedule some time on your commute:

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Why are people loving this episode?


What do we talk about in the podcast?

  • How North America influenced his education philosophy

  • Why Reach Academy Feltham may never have come to exist

  • Why he’s reluctant to shout from the rooftops about Reach Academy’s success

  • Which strand of work runs through everything they do and which organisations have been pivotal to their success

  • An ‘unfashionable’ opinion he has about student attainment data

  • How they can afford to timetable teachers to not be teaching to make teachers lives easier

  • How this work will be shared with other schools and thousands of trainee teachers

  • Why he thinks teachers leaving the profession might actually help the retention

  • His latest thinking on offering staff more flexibility

  • Which leadership model has been central to improving teaching and learning

  • Which organisations Reach has worked with to keep getting better

  • Why two cross-sector training programmes were the best professional development experiences he’s ever had

  • What he thinks the school can do better to improve CPD

  • How he makes sure the organisations Reach partners with are worth their salt

  • Why he’s glad he isn’t a headteacher in France

  • Why he is surprisingly bullish about the funding crisis

  • How he has reduced costs and increased income for the school

  • What one question he would ask every headteacher if he could

  • The ‘heart attack’ in the first year of teaching

  • Why he thinks support families and communities before students begin school is the key to a bright future in education


💬 Join the conversation. Tweet us @NiallAlcock and @edvainker. We’d love to know what you think.

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The best In Beta bits

We Are In Beta is a positive space that aims to capture the knowledge of inspiring school leaders.

As a thank you for being a valued member of the community, I curate the practical strategies and solutions to the challenges they’ve face so you don’t miss out on them - the partnerships, the programmes, the books and the blogs.

So what’s come up via Ed's interview?


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Best,

@NiallAlcock


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