Lancashire Education Award

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24th September 18
Trail : home / Case Studies : Professional Development

St Michael and St John's Primary School - Best Practice

Our project has continued to establish strong links between parents as partners and school practitioners in the Foundation Stage. This has led to improvement in accurately assessing children and has accelerated their learning as a direct result of the connection and contribution from their parents. The curriculum is now designed around the children's interest. By breaking down the barriers of home and school we have introduced a variety of home school links, which include parent questionnaires, half termly newsletters, homework grids, target trains and wow moments.

We invite parents and extended family members on a regular basis to work alongside their child through 'coffee mornings', we encourage parent reading sessions where parents come into school to promote reading and we actively seek parent helpers. As a direct impact of establishing these links pupils' end of year results have improved each year, children are motivated and excited to learn and parents have enjoyed taking on a more active role. As a result, our ethos has promoted a family environment where parents feel non-threatened, and are able to approach staff. Together we at St Michael and St John's are proud to have a shared vision in each child's learning.

Posted: 16th Jan 2014 Little Me Cluster : Adobe Acrobat file (94.8k)

Rosegrove Nursery School, Basnett Street Nursery School, Rockwood Nursery School, Taywood Nursery School - Innovative Practice Award

  • The cluster formed a small working party of local Nursery Schools to look at how to address equalities and community cohesion with Nursery age children. With support from the EMA/GRT achievement service, they chose to use a simple figure 'Little Me' to support their work.
  • Each child made their own, self-representation 'Little Me' figure and used them in all areas of continuous provision within the different nurseries. They were used in transition and as a way of developing parental engagement through a home/school 'Little Me Adventure Book' or through discussions or conversations.

It was evident that through the use of 'Little Me', children's personal, social and emotional development was supported and communication between home and school was enhanced.

Posted: 2nd Feb 2012 Coaching and Mentoring throughout the School : Adobe Acrobat file (71.6k)

Crawshawbooth Primary School - Good Practice Award

The outcome of our project is to disseminate outstanding practice through coaching and mentoring of all teachers, teaching assistants and staff in order to raise the teaching from 'good' to 'good with outstanding features'.

The ethos of the school is one of team work with an atmosphere of staff learning from each other with good self-evaluation skills.

We achieved the Good Practice Award in 2010 for AfL and the Creative Curriculum and we wanted to build on this by developing the Coaching project throughout the school in order to raise attainment in teaching, particularly in Literacy.

All staff received Coaching training from the adviser. This has been followed up by regular staff meetings to focus on coaching linked to the Boys' Writing Project and AfL (our school improvement priorities). Performance management targets are linked tightly to the above SIP priorities

Staff paired up with each other and teachers and teaching assistants to develop coaching with a view to raising the quality of teaching from 'good' to 'good with outstanding features'. Shared lesson observations and self evaluation discussions took place.

After only half a term there has already been a noticeable improvement of the quality of teaching observed during lesson observations.

Posted: 1st Feb 2012 Our Lancashire  - Heart and Home  : Adobe Acrobat file (83.7k)

 The Rose School - Innovative Practice Award


The Rose School is totally committed to providing pupils with opportunities to learn about their community – not only in a geographic/historical/social sense and in particular looking at innovative ways of skilling pupils using practical/hands on approach to learning.
After much planning and preparation (through a small grant) a local artist worked with all of our pupils on a project entitled 'Our Lancashire – Heart & Home' From an initial large group – a smaller group of pupils then linked in to a local high school and worked intensely with the artist – learning new art/craft skills (pottery, glazing, painting, use of specialist equipment, designing etc….).
This took place over a period of 6 months. The resulting piece of art work depicts areas/people/events which pupils felt depicted the community in which they live. Pupils learnt about communities, to work as a team, to support each other, new skills and even now continue to attend art/craft classes at the local school. Understanding and feeling proud of our community plus learning, achieving and enjoying are strong legacies of this project

positive links between White Ash School and local mainstream Primary Schools.

White Ash School, Oswaldtwistle - Good Practice Award

In September 2011 White Ash became a GLD Primary Special School for pupils aged 2-11 years as part of the re-organisation of Hyndburn Special Schools. In order to make this an inclusive experience for the pupils and ensure a smooth transition we planned:
Joint activity days where pupils of all 3 Special Schools were given the opportunities to meet new peers/staff whilst engaging in learning experiences.
Parental meetings, visits/open days
Impact: Extremely positive parental feedback and happy settled children.

Since September White Ash has increased the number of links with local mainstream schools, from 1-10. As a result of this we now offer:
Advice from specialist teachers including ASD, Communication, Behaviour Management, MSI.
A positive learning environment for the visiting pupils.
Professional development opportunities for staff in mainstream setting, i.e. Communication, Behaviour Management.
Parental support including invitations to parent group sessions
Colleague support/resources/positive strategies for TAs working with SEN pupils in mainstream primary schools

Improved progress of SEN pupils within mainstream settings
Positive feedback from the local mainstream link schools
Increased the knowledge and confidence of staff form the link schools
Increased knowledge and understanding of parents of SEN pupils attending mainstream accessing supportive links with special school environment.

Posted: 3rd Jun 2011 Commitment and Development of Lunchtime ....  : Adobe Acrobat file (78.5k)

.... Supervision within the school community

Clifton Primary School (Good Practice Award)

The project developed out of the change of Lunchtime Welfare Supervision and the needs of the children. Playtime can be a source of tension and worry for some children. If children are unhappy at playtime they are unhappy at school. There was a need to:

  • create a happy and calm playtime
  • bring positive energy back into the school
  • encourage inclusive play
  • give support to welfare so they can support each other
  • improve the outside environment so adults and children can enjoy being there
  • empower the children to solve problems relating to playtimes
  • involve the whole school community including governors, teachers, teaching assistants, welfare, parents and children
  • work on the school development plan to include well structured, practical strategies for improving playtimes
  • assess how much funding was required to implement the plans.

The result of this ongoing project is the development of positivity of behaviour throughout lunchtime, engaging and inviting all pupils and staff, leading to a reduction in playground incidents and a stronger whole school community with a vast improvement of the outside facilities and equipment for all to use.

Posted: 7th Aug 2008 Improving the quality of teaching and learning : Adobe Acrobat file (82.5k)

Walton- Le- Dale Arts College

• The project was designed to raise the quality of teaching and learning in the school, converting all lessons to a minimum adequate standard, turning adequates into good and good into outstanding.  The aim was to have a majority (70%) of lessons in school standardised as good or better with no inadequate lessons.
• This was done through a whole school drive and commitment to school and department self evaluation, lesson planning, lesson observations, teacher self analysis and a weekly focus on a specific theme.  The programme was supported by a peer mentoring and coaching programme.  Feedback was collated and analysed weekly with whole school training and development based upon the findings.
The percentage of good or better lessons has more than doubled in one year and the number of outstanding lessons has trebled.  Teaching and learning across the school is more creative, involves greater risk taking and challenge.  Student behaviour, engagement in and enjoyment for lessons has increased significantly and attainment levels have risen.  Staff are more self aware, open to change and are prepared to ‘dip their toes in the water’.

Posted: 2nd Jun 2010 Professional Development for Support Staff : Adobe Acrobat file (77.7k)

St. Thomas The Martyr CE Primary School (Good Practice)

We value our support staff and appreciate the dedication they have shown over recent years. It was recognised that any improvements the school made with regards to the professional development of the support staff would benefit the whole school community.
We introduced annual Performance Management interviews to teaching assistants.
We consulted with the teaching assistants with regards to their training needs.
ICT sessions were timetabled with the ICT Coordinator and technician developing confidence and ICT capability enabling the TAs to offer support to both the class teachers and the pupils. Our TAs are now comfortable working in the ICT suite with groups of children.
Guided reading and writing sessions with the literacy coordinator enabling teaching assistants to work more purposefully with small groups of children using assessment focuses.
Teaching Assistants are invited to all staff meetings and INSET.
A sound technician was employed to provide a day's training on using sound technology and software. TAs are planning to utilise this training in school performances.
A visual artist was employed to provide a day's training on 3D art and collage techniques. TAs are now planning and leading a whole school art project.
Half termly meetings are held with Key Stage leaders/SENCO to discuss any concerns and provide advice
Support staff are encouraged to progress to level 3. One TA is currently working towards level 3.

Posted: 5th Feb 2010 School Team Development : Adobe Acrobat file (79.7k)

Ribbleton Avenue Infant School (Best Practice)

  • Staff felt the mission statement no longer reflected the work of the school and the increasing emphasis on creativity in the curriculum, specifically the work to support the whole child via inter-agency working, supportive work in class and groups
  • We therefore set several milestones in place that together created the emphasis on nurture alongside academic achievement that school has today.
  • Introduction of the Well-Being project to develop cohesion in teams and the larger school team.  This included the dedication of an INSET day to staff well-being and the completion of the questionnaire to provide feedback as the years progressed. 
  • A 'Thorns and Roses' INSET to look at the current practice and policy with the whole school community and identify things that need to change and that we do well.  This was led by the SLT.  The staff felt listened to and valued.  This created a focus for the next phase of development.
  • A review of the school mission statement to reflect our renewed vision and direction.  Updating the view ready for the next millennium.
  • Outstanding OFSTED that commented on "good, ambitious and knowledgeable leadership and management that put the diverse needs of the children first...As a result, children have a good grounding in the academic and social skills needed to do well later in life."
Posted: 4th Jun 2009 Providing ASD training courses : Adobe Acrobat file (94.5k)

Hillside Specilalist School for Autism Spectrum Disorder, Communication and Interaction.
(Innovative Practice Award)

In response to increasing enquiries for advice and support for pupils with ASD in mainstream schools, Hillside School set up an Outreach Team to provide a more specific source of support, training and advice for its mainstream partners and other schools throughout Lancashire.
The Team already had successful inclusion links with local schools and we began by setting up one day courses about ASD and the strategies needed in mainstream schools.   This has developed over two years to include more specific courses such as Social Stories and the provision of INSET for whole school training.  We have visiting speakers as well as using the expertise of Hillside staff.  This team has staff with mainstream as well as special school (ASD) experience and has successfully followed up the training in individual schools by providing on-going support.
The training courses are normally over-subscribed and we receive very positive feedback.  The main impact has been on the education of individual pupils with ASD in mainstream schools who are now being supported by well-trained staff who are able to meet their specific needs and so enable them to enjoy, achieve and make a positive contribution to their education.

Posted: 4th Jun 2009 Creative Approaches to Workforce Development : Adobe Acrobat file (86.7k)

Pear Tree School (Best Practice Award)

The Workforce Reform Agenda enabled us to think creatively in terms of support staff roles to both enhance teaching and learning opportunities throughout school and improve standards of attainment and achievement of all our pupils.

Raising standards of professionalism and developing core competence throughout all areas of our workforce enabled us to address the ECM Agenda and the Extended Schools Initiative. We retained long standing and highly skilled members of our support staff by creating new and innovative roles that support our shared vision and aims in school. These exciting changes to existing staff roles created a ripple effect within school, providing others with more opportunities for career progression.

The Remodelling Agenda enabled us to strengthen the Senior Management Team by developing the leadership role of support staff. Our School Improvement Group now includes a Level 4 teaching assistant who is in charge of Professional Development for the support staff and a Level 4 teaching assistant who manages our Children's Centre. Performance Management and Professional Development opportunities are extended to all support staff to enable them to focus on their role in raising standards and support an ethos of lifelong learning which is embedded in our school practice.

Posted: 6th Feb 2009 Developing the Role of the ICT Champion : Adobe Acrobat file (106.9k)

St Philip's Primary School (Good Practice)

Pendle Networked Learning Community has existed in various forms for over two decades and was originally a relationship created for the mutual support of a group of very small schools. The group is a diverse group, some serve rural communities, others are in urban contexts. That diversity enriches our relationship and has enabled us to promote a number of school- to-school projects over recent years strongly linked to social cohesion.
This project was to develop the skills and resources within this group of people to be the key drivers in ensuring ICT pervades the life and work of our schools. We viewed this as a capacity building programme to build within this group the selfsustaining capacity to lead change. Our aspiration was that in championing ICT they support and develop others in their roles as class teachers/subject leaders.
By adopting an enquiry approach we enabled the group to create a rigorous approach to testing the efficacy of any new provision and we created and allowed them to portray what emerges from the process so that others can learn from their experiences.
The programme was designed as a CPD project. A group of staff (teaching and nonteaching)
representing each of our schools was brought together to investigate and develop coaching as a philosophy which we planned to use to enhance the way our co-ordinators led their subjects.
Concurrently these training sessions enabled us to use the philosophy to developpeer to peer coaching in ICT skills and knowledge for our pupils.

Tarleton Community Primary School (Good Practice)

As a learning community we believe that to be effective, teachers must take ownership of and give high priority to their own and others’ professional development. Through our Performance Management we demonstrate the value we place on each individual by engaging in quality professional dialogue that allows them to share and reach their career aspirations. Each teacher has an allocation to spend on their own professional development needs and money is available for all non-teaching staff. Our CPD Officer gives a real focus to developments. Performance Management targets come directly from the SDP, are closely linked to the Professional Standards and SLT agree areas prior to planning meetings. Teachers apply for the training they want, which has to show a clear link to school improvement. Allocations are used creatively, taking advantage of expertise within our school, other schools and consultants, in addition to the normal courses available. Individual development includes delivering training to staff, including non-teaching staff. Teaching Assistants have received a range of training, including a TIPD visit. We now have a confident, enthusiastic staff who are keen to share new knowledge and skills with the rest of the team.

Brinscall St John's C.E. Methodist Primary School (Good Practice)

We have improved support staff professional development at Brinscall St. John's over recent years. We wanted to prove that this would have an impact on pupil learning and enjoyment of school life. We believe that this has happened. Behaviour in school is excellent, and the children achieve well above national expectations
• We value all our support staff and want them to feel included in every aspect of school life.
• Our children treat all adults with equal respect. We believe this is because all our staff works together as a team. The positive relationship between all staff sets an excellent example to the children.
• We know that happy, contented welfare assistants lead to well behaved, considerate children.
• Our Administrator acts as line manager for support staff and is part of the SMT - significant role in communication.
• We provide a yearly performance management interview for all support staff.
• We hold termly meetings for support staff and welfare assistants.
• All support staff receive an induction booklet and are allocated a mentor.
• Teaching Assistants receive training to enable them to take small groups of children to reinforce work undertaken in class.
• A number of our Teaching Assistants are qualified HLTA's and are now covering for teachers' PPA time.
• Teaching Assistants are actively encouraged to attend courses.

Posted: 2nd Jun 2008 Development of Support Staff at Holy Trinity : Adobe Acrobat file (82k)

Bacup Holy Trinity Stacksteads C.E. Primary School

• Many support staff joined our school without any formal qualifications- they had a flair and enthusiasm for their jobs and many skills which we as a school wanted to build upon for the benefit of the children, other staff members in school and for the individual themselves. The prior experience and qualifications of our support staff varied considerably, therefore individual needs had to be addressed. I was appointed as support staff line manager to develop an ongoing programme to address the individual needs of the professional development of support staff in our school.
• A "pool" of support staff was created within school.
• All support staff - old and new - received a school induction programme.
• A yearly performance management interview was introduced where views and aspirations were listened to and, if possible, acted upon for the benefit of the person, the school development and the children-encompassing EveryChild Matters.
• Challenging development targets are produced ensuring support staff work at a high quality professional level.
•  A professional development programme was introduced for each member of the support staff team and each person has been encouraged to be involved.
• The professional development of our support staff has been a challenging yet rewarding process. Most importantly the performance of teaching and learning has improved by raising standards of professionalism across the school.

Posted: 20th Jul 2006 A comprehensive framework of CPD : Adobe Acrobat file (123.4k)

Morecambe and Heysham Morecambe Road School (Best Practice Award)

Teachers’ Performance Management Reviews evaluate performance on the Threshold Standards, prescribing developments required for progression on the Upper Pay Spine.  40-plus Teaching Assistants have completed Performance Reviews since 2000.  Twenty Teaching Assistants operate in specialist teams and are guided to access specific training in their specialist areas.

PM reviews targets largely relate directly to the School Improvement Plan (SIP) priorities.  The Induction/Mentoring programme relates to all new appointments including Governors.  All 3 of these processes are annually evaluated and updated and have undergone significant change.  All staff enjoy extensive access to CPD activities and CPD portfolios are of high quality and evidence the impact of CPD activities on teaching and learning.  The Professional Development Section of the SIP is comprehensive and reflects the school’s fourth IIP Accreditation.

The staff commitment to continuous improvement is reflected in the SDC’s annual audit reporting on links and strands between CPD activities and SIP priorities.

Posted: 20th Jul 2006 Implementation of Initial Teacher Training : Adobe Acrobat file (112.4k)

Crawshawbooth Primary School (Good Practice Award)

Initially the school had no links with Teacher Training Providers.  It was felt, however, that by supporting students to become teachers there would be many benefits to the school and the appointment of a new member of staff who was already a trained mentor gave momentum to this.

The benefits for teachers are that they are able to reflect and evaluate on their own practice and develop confidence from passing on their knowledge.  All teachers are receptive to being observed on a regular basis and are willing to share advice and support on relevant areas.

The children have benefited by becoming more confident and comfortable with additional adults in the classroom, they are more receptive to different teaching styles and it has been possible to give extra support to children in identified areas of development.

As a school we are very supportive to all students who come in.  We have strengthened our team ethos and welcomed new and fresh ideas.

... through the development of a systematic and coherent approach to Continuing Professional Development that has a lasting impact on teaching and learning (Innovative Practice Award)

Lostock Hall Primary School

The newly appointed headteacher revised the performance management process in school to ensure it was more closely linked to school improvement priorities. Professional Development Interviews and portfolios were introduced and opportunities provided for staff to observe good practice, undertake action research and liaise with other schools. Outcomes include an improved learning environment, improvements in practice, attainment and achievement and in the quality of relationships across the school.