Teaching schools are part of the government’s drive to give schools more freedom and to enable schools to take increasing responsibility for managing the education system.
The vision for teaching schools is to have an established network of outstanding teaching school alliances that will drive significant improvement in the quality of professional practice, improving the attainment of every child.
Teaching schools play a fundamental role in developing a self-sustaining system where:
Trainee teachers learn from the best teachers, supported by a culture of coaching and mentoring
Professional development is school-based and classroom focused – teachers, support staff and leaders improve through exposure to excellent practice within and beyond their immediate school, through observation, mentoring, coaching, practice, reflection and sharing with peers
Talent development and distributed leadership are the norm – staff demonstrating potential are encouraged to lead and are given structured and stretching opportunities to grow and develop
Leaders have local knowledge and can identify where key resources and expertise lie.
As well as offering training and support, teaching schools identify and coordinate expertise in partner schools, using the best leaders and teachers to:
Play a greater role in recruiting and training new entrants to the profession (initial teacher training - ITT)
Lead peer-to-peer professional and leadership development (continuing professional development - CPD)
Identify and develop leadership potential (succession planning and talent management)
Provide support for other schools
Designate and broker specialist leaders of education (Specialist Leaders of Education - SLEs)
Engage in research and development activity
Focus on the quality of teaching and leadership
This results in a progressive continuum of professional development provision from initial teacher training to leadership via a collaborative, school-led approach that sits within a more autonomous system. This provides a simple, non-bureaucratic and flexible approach for a system that provides high quality training and development. The outcome of this is a system that provides value for money with the potential to become self-sustaining while being an attractive and accessible proposition for all schools.