Opportunity Areas webinar – school improvement: Tuesday 7 June, 2.30-4.30pm

Register and join the webinar to learn how schools are improving pupils’ education in Blackpool, Derby, Stoke-on-Trent and Hastings.

The Department for Education (DfE) has invested £108 million over 5 years to transform the life chances of children and young people in 12 areas of the country with low social mobility as part of the Government’s Opportunity Area programme. 

On 7 June at 2.30-4.30pm, we are hosting a webinar for Education practitioners, leaders, providers and anyone with an interest in social mobility to hear from those working hard to make a difference for children.

From improving pupils’ reading abilities in Key Stages 2 and 3, adopting a mastery approach in maths to improve teaching and learning, to using evidence-based interventions in English, maths and science to support Key Stage 3 transition – you will hear insights from successful school improvement projects in Blackpool, Derby, Stoke-on-Trent and Hastings.

Sign up to the webinar: Opportunity Areas webinar – School Improvement Tickets, Tue 7 Jun 2022 at 14:30 | Eventbrite, or contact Opportunity.Areas@education.gov.uk for more information

Life of a Learning Behaviour Lead

This past two terms have been an adventure and it all started with a new job role a learning behaviour lead. What is that you might ask?

Well… I have found my role a unique one, but one that has been incredibly rewarding!

I have supported children who have found the journey into school difficult. I have met parents and children in the mornings who both find the school run a tricky time and I have sent them home at the end of the day with a

beaming smile because the task they felt so daunting in the morning, seems to be forgotten and the day has been as success.

I also have helped children to feel settled within their days at school, sometimes not the easiest of tasks when the child is upset with themselves at how they have behaved or the choices they have made. But well worth it when they make choices that enable them to have the reward time they have picked, their smiles and their thankfulness at you supporting them is what makes the job so worthwhile for me!

My job has involved lots of things this year but the most worthwhile one is making a difference and seeing the changes to the lives of the children, the staff and the parents.
It really makes a difference when you can see the progression of the children and seeing more and more smiles every day. 

Becca (Learning Behaviour Lead – St Margaret’s Primary School)    

How Ipswich educators are making a big impact with maths

Through the IOA,36 teachers, middle leaders and Early Years practitioners have taken on the role of “Implementation Lead”. These individuals are dedicated to improving numeracy/literacy outcomes for children and young pupils. Implementation Leads (ILs) and Early Years Implementation Leads (EYILs) have committed their time to completing intensive EEF training and overseeing projects that are rooted in solid evidence of what works.

ILs and EYILs planned out projects to improve the teaching & learning within their schools/settings/colleges, provide targeted support to the pupils who most need it and ultimately to improve pupil attainment.

IL Maths Projects:

13 of the 23 Implementation Leads chose to focus on maths, some of the most common features of their projects included: delivering CPD to upskill teaching/support staff, targeted pupil interventions, use of knowledge organisers, increased focus on key arithmetic skills, 1:1 coaching to improve staff subject knowledge, curriculum revision & improvements and enhanced opportunities for metacognitive approaches.

ILs report that their projects are working well, highlighting the following positive impacts:

“Staff are implementing the training they have been given. This is evidenced in lesson observations, pupil voice and learning walks”

“We’re having good impact with our first small cohort for Maths intervention, as evidenced by their improved Maths scores on the target skills areas”

“Staff are using the EEF strands to inform planning and longer-term targets”

ILs regularly engage with the latest developments in evidence-based research and are familiar with EEF guidance reports. Why not take a look at the linked EEF summary recommendation posters?

Improving Maths in EY & KS1

Improving Maths in KS2 and KS3

EYIL Maths Projects:

10 of the 13 Early Years Implementation Leads chose to focus on numeracy, common features across their projects included: consistent use of trackers to monitor children’s progress, targeted interventions delivered by EYILs, half-termly progress reviews, numeracy activities involving families, CPD training for all EY practitioners in setting, creating numeracy corners, purchasing high-quality maths resources, consistent use of mathematical language and regular discussion of mathematical concepts.

EYILs report that their projects are progressing positively, pointing to the following examples of success:  

“Staff have said they are feeling more confident in teaching numeracy”

“Being able to assess children so that we know the level they are working at and the interventions needed to support their learning”

“Introducing numeracy ‘borrow bags’ for families to take home and return…This has helped to build a learning link with families to help with continuous learning”

EYILs understand the importance of engaging with EEF guidance reports and other evidence-based research. Why not take a look at the linked EEF summary recommendation poster? Improving Maths in EY & KS1

Want to learn more or get involved?

If you’re interested in…

  • Reading brief summaries of maths project and find contact details for individual maths project leads, take a look at the Eastern Opportunity Areas Sharing Learning Hub, in the summer term. Why not come along to the Hub launch events at the University of Suffolk on 27th April, 8 am and 4:30 pm? Click here to book
  • Familiarising yourself with the latest maths guidance reports, effective teaching strategies or available training opportunities, contact the Ipswich Associate Research School at vanessa.bally.ipswich@researchschool.org.uk

Suffolk TA Network Easter Newsletter

Lots to enjoy in the Suffolk TA Network newsletter this time round – supporting teaching and learning in FE and primary, and insights on outdoor education in a secondary school and strategies to support speech, language and communication.

There are some great tips on supporting learners with dyslexia and details of an upcoming free discussion event, as well as a wealth of training opportunities, resources and events for TAs.

To join the Suffolk TA Network simply complete this form or email suffolktan@westbourne.attrust.org.uk

Sharing Learning Hub Update

Thank you so much to everyone who has already contributed a Case Study for the Sharing Learning Hub. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you want to “Tell Your Story” and be part of this vibrant community.

The aim of Sharing Learning Hub is to make sure that no child/young person in our area ever gets left behind again. Through the shared learning of a concerned, connected community of leaders, teachers and educational practitioners who believe in new approaches to key priorities, we want to help children/young people across Ipswich, Norwich and Fenland/East Cambridgeshire unlock their potential and improve their chances in life.

We will be launching the Hub on Wednesday 27 April with 2 in-person events (one Breakfast and one after-school) in central Ipswich. You will have the opportunity to see and use the hub and to meet the team who have worked so tirelessly on the Opportunity Area programme in Ipswich over the past five years. I will be sending out more details of the launch nearer the time but, for now, please pencil this into your diaries.

Dave Ladbrook

Eastern Opportunities Areas Sharing Learning Lead

david.ladbrook@newanglia.co.uk

07881 656856

Helping Ipswich children “Tell Their Story”

Image by| JMA Photography

We’re excited to hear about the projects Ipswich schools, colleges and nurseries are putting in place with their funding from the “Tell Your Story” fund. The grants enable education settings to work with artists and arts organisations in the Ipswich area on projects that develop children’s emotional literacy or oracy. The Ipswich Cultural Education Partnership (ICEP) has been a key partner in bringing schools and artists together, and on Wednesday 2nd March we’ll be getting an update from the project leads on how their projects are shaping up.  Here’s just a taster of the 32 projects that are being developed:

  • Clifford Road Primary are working with local artist Lisa Temple Cox on a project called “Bringing the Past to Life”, creating an 8-metre mural telling the story of their school during WW2 through the eyes of our children.
  • Ipswich Academy are working with Rock, Paper, Scissors to create the “Mindfulness and Thoughtfulness Creativity Hub” (MATCH) – a dynamic space in a decommissioned bus on site for students to drop in for drawing sessions to help provide moments of calm for students under stress.
  • Rainbow Bright Nursery are working with Baby Sense and Rock Paper Scissors on a project called “Let Your Hands Do The Talking” with 24 weeks of singing, art installations and sign language – encouraging nursery aged children to express their emotions and feel positive about their hands after so much of their early years spent washing and sanitising.
  • Pupils at Westbridge Academy will work with Slide Productions to create a series of short films to tell their own personal stories.

If you are an artist or educator, and you would like to join us for our session on 2nd March at 4pm to hear how these projects are shaping up please email hazel.weekes@newanglia.co.uk

Strong School Start Buddy Programme

The Strong School Start project has launched their new Buddying up programme. This is an exciting opportunity for schools and settings to join forces to share knowledge and build skills. Members of the network have paired up based on their strengths and areas of interest giving them an opportunity to work with people from all over the town and see how things are done in schools and settings they wouldn’t normally get to work with. The buddies will work together over a series of buddying sessions to share their expertise and learn from each other on a range of areas from SEND to Supporting staff wellbeing. This is a real opportunity for education professionals to get to know each other and benefit from each other’s knowledge as well as sharing what they do well and resources they have developed in their settings and schools. The skills learnt and knowledge gained will make a real difference in the early years sector across Ipswich while building lasting connections in to local area to support transitions work across the town benefiting young people for years to come.