Thursday, 28 February 2013

"MADE IN SHEFFIELD"!

I started the day with the Sheffield Headteachers at The Cutlers' Hall. The Cutlers' "Made in Sheffield" project was the main item on this special meeting of the secondary headteachers and it was wonderful to have Neil MacDonald, the Master Cutler, Cllr Jackie Drayton, Sheffield City Council lead member for education and skills, and Jayne Ludlum, Director of Children's Services, all talking so positively and enthusiastically about what has been achieved so far!
"Made in Sheffield"
It was an excellent session; which included a brief overview of the project, inputs by headteachers, school co-ordinators and link businesses, but the highlight for everyone was the contributions made by three young Cutlers' Ambassadors who talked passionately about the programme and why it was important. Their confidence, enthusiasm, positivity and insight, despite their nerves, was fantastic. It simply made everyone proud to be part of what is "Made in Sheffield".

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

LIVE LONG AND PROSPER!


I was re-reading some research gathered on more than 1,500 children who were about 10 years old when they were first studied in 1921. This study has been used to create the most comprehensive longitudinal evidence for how to live long and prosper. As I have said for a long time we simply need to be persistent, disciplined and work hard for as long as we possibly can, stay connected with friends and colleagues and volunteer and give to others whenever and whatever we can.



Monday, 25 February 2013

'How the world's most improved school systems keep getting better!

I was re-reading the brilliant McKinsey Report 'How the world's most improved school systems keep getting better' again and wondering why this doesn't shape the current debate we are having here in the UK. It isn't rocket science and we simply need to:
  • Understand the context;
  • Develop the improvement toolkit;
  • Adapt the toolkit to fit the context;
  • Develop a sustainable model;
  • Ignite people's commitment and passion. 

Sunday, 24 February 2013

HAPPY SUNDAY: SAY IT WITH FLOWERS!

Despite the snow, the rain and the bitterly cold windy I am doing my best to stay positive and keep smiling. I find flowers brighten the day and my home is full of colour at the moment.

Saturday, 23 February 2013

YOUR CHOICE!

I don't know about you but I constantly ask myself what is it that makes a school, a care home, a hospital, a business or any organisation brilliant and what can we learn from what talented colleagues are doing in schools, care homes, hospitals, businesses and organisations across the country and across the world.

Friday, 22 February 2013

CHARACTER MATTERS!

I was reading Paul Tough's book 'How Children Succeed'. In this great read he highlights the qualities most likely to ensure a better job, a better degree and a better and more fulfilling life... grit, curiosity and character. 



Thursday, 21 February 2013

IMPORTANT STUFF: DEMING'S FOURTEEN PRINCIPLES!

I have been reading some of William Deming's work. Deming was an American statistician, professor, author, lecturer and consultant. He is perhaps best known for the "Plan-Do-Check-Act" cycle popularly named after him which we know better as plan-do-review. In Japan, from 1950 onwards, he taught top management how to improve design, product quality, testing, and sales. Importantly, Deming offered fourteen key principles to managers for transforming business effectiveness. The principles apply as much to schools as to any other organisations.

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

CUTLERS' AMBASSADORS AT THE BLUE SHED!

I had a brilliant day today with 30 Cutlers' Ambassadors at The Blue Shed. A day that started at 8am and finished at 7pm...

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

WHY SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING AND MATHEMATICS MATTERS!

We all know that science, technology, engineering and maths really matter and that we need to ensure that our children and young people receive an education that inspires them in these critical areas. I found this brilliant infographic and wanted to share it with you...

Monday, 18 February 2013

TEN TIPS FOR BUILDING BRILLIANT!

Everyone keeps telling me that it's hard to create brilliant learning places but after nearly forty years working in and with schools I simply don't believe it! We know how to deliver outstanding outcomes and build brilliant teams... and it's not rocket science!

Sunday, 17 February 2013

NOT ROCKET SCIENCE: ANYONE CAN DO IT!

"In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves 
beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists."

I always ask myself after visiting great schools and brilliant places what is it that makes it a brilliant learning place and what can we learn from what talented colleagues are doing...

The answers aren't rocket science...

Saturday, 16 February 2013

IT ISN'T ROCKET SCIENCE!

I have visited some great schools recently, and having spent the last twenty years learning about learning I know what it takes to build brilliant. And the great news is that it's alive and well and it's not rocket science...


Friday, 15 February 2013

WHAT WORKS: HOW THE WORLD'S MOST IMPROVED SCHOOL SYSTEMS KEEP GETTING BETTER!

"Almost every country has undertaken some form of school system reform during the past two decades, but very few have succeeded in improving their systems from poor to fair to good to great to excellent." Mona Mourshed, Chinezi Chijioke and Michael Barber

WHAT WORKS: GETTING TO GOOD!

Thursday, 14 February 2013

MY VISIT TO CANON LEE SCHOOL!

I spent the morning at Canon Lee School in York where I am now a local authority governor.


WHAT WORKS: IMPROVING SCHOOLS!

"Children and young people have only one chance of a good education....We need to work together to make sure all schools are good schools.This booklet is designed to help schools... learn from what works." Sir Michael Wilshaw

Monday, 11 February 2013

MAKING A DIFFERENCE WHERE IT MATTERS!

We need to ensure that we target and reach those students who need us most. Our friends at OFSTED have produced some case studies identifying where schools have achieved great results using the pupil premium and published these great resources to help schools identify how they can learn and ensure that all young people achieve their potential.

Friday, 8 February 2013

TEN STRESS BUSTERS!

However tough life is it's better to start each new day with a smile. 
I was sent this by my friends at the GOOD site. I know there is nothing here that you haven't heard before but here are GOOD's 10 stress busters for you to try...

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

THINK TEAM!

In a world where OFSTED strikes fear into the hearts of headteachers and teachers it is important to remember that the current short-term, and quick fix interventionist approach is not based on in-depth understanding of the research evidence about what works or a detailed understanding of the context and culture of schools, but on superficial data analysis and instant judgements which don't lead to sustainable lasting change or school improvement.

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

THE EDGE FOUNDATION: SIX STEPS FOR CHANGE!

The Edge Foundation published this important report last year and anyone who is passionate about learning and that children and young people should have access to a curriculum that blends the best of academic learning and technical learning should read this report.

SOMETHING TO MAKE YOU THINK!



"Young people today are three times as likely as their parents to be out of work. Yet many employers can’t find people with the right entry-level skills to fill their jobs." How do we close the gap?

COACHING COUNTS!

This is important stuff since we spend so much time doing things that have little impact on learning and student outcomes. We need to be constantly reviewing what we do and asking ourselves questions about what works!


TEACHING MATTERS BUT LEARNING COUNTS!

Interestingly, John Hattie's research suggests that only 30% of what makes a difference is in the hands of teachers.

Monday, 4 February 2013

LET'S FOCUS ON WHAT WORKS!

The great thing about research is that it tells us what works and importantly what doesn't work!
The Sutton Trust - EEF Teaching and Learning Toolkit reinforces John Hattie's work.

Sunday, 3 February 2013

HAPPY SUNDAY: What a wonderful world!

 
"I see trees of green........ red roses too 
I see em bloom..... for me and for you 
And I think to myself.... what a wonderful world.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

EEF TOOLKIT: WHAT ALSO WORKS WELL!

The Sutton Trust-EEF Teaching and Learning Toolkit is an accessible summary of educational research which provides guidance for teachers and schools on how to use their resources to improve the attainment of disadvantaged pupils.

The Toolkit currently covers 30 topics, each summarised in terms of their average impact on attainment, the strength of the evidence supporting them and their cost. These are the ones that also make a difference!

THIS SATURDAY, EAT CHOCOLATE!

I have been telling people for years about the importance of red wine, chocolate and exercise!

Friday, 1 February 2013