Strategies for SPLD Learners

We were delighted to host the British Dyslexia Association for a training session on strategies for supporting dyslexic students. The training, which was attended by a number of our primary partners as well as secondary colleagues, covered well the theory but also a good range of day-to-day ideas to help our students make better progress. Everybody left with ideas they can take away and use it their own classrooms.

Challenging the More Able - Bradon Forest School

We were delighted to share some of our experience and expertise working with more able students at Bradon Forest School as part of their twilight inset programme. Our key concepts of the pit, questioning technique, metacognition, praise and reward, were covered in a fast paced session. The session was run by Ben Edwards, one of our SLEs.

Taking opportunities like this to work with colleagues in other schools is a key part of our teaching school work. Please get in touch if you’d like to arrange similar events for your school.

Primary ICT Network

We have recently set up an ICT network for our local primary schools so that we can best share best practice around our local community. Utilising the skills and expertise of our secondary ICT team, as well as the resources they can offer, this has proven to be useful for developing schemes of work and ideas to further expand the primary ICT curriculum. Plans for further outreach work are already in place. If you’d like to get involved with this, please do get in touch.

Class of 2018

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We are delighted to announce the first successful graduation of our School Direct trainee teachers.  A teacher training year is a tough ask, but they have coped admirably and all developed into great teachers ready to join the profession. 

It is excellent also that all have secured jobs, many in local and partner schools in the area. 

One of the biggest advantaged with School Direct is that the trainees and school bound a close working partnership and we can say this has been especially true with this cohort of trainees.  As well as training them, we have benefited ourselves from the experience and learnt new ideas and approaches to teaching.

Roll on next year with more trainees and the start of our primary school direct course too!

Stretching the Highly Able in a Comprehensive School

We were pleased to host a day of in school training looking at how, we in a county with grammar schools, stretch our highly able students.  The day included opportunities to see best practice, discuss with pupils their perceptions and two workshops, one looking at extra curricular activities and the other at classroom techniques.

It was fascinating to see how the focus drifted towards good, generally teaching and learning and therefore the importance of stretch and challenge for all.  We dislike labelling pupils as 'gifted', 'talented' or 'highly able' but nonetheless there is a huge wealth of opportunity and challenge at The Cotswold School.

Hanley Castle Research Visit

We were delighted today to host three excellent middle leaders from Hanley Castle School keen to find out more about the secrets of our success.  We spent the day talking about and seeing in practice the ways that the ethos and culture of the school are formed.  We went on to study different aspect of the school's leadership including data, pastoral care and teaching and learning.  It was also a great opportunity to discuss and collaborate with colleagues and the start of future partnership work together, we hope.

Highly Able Research Group

We are delighted to be working in partnership with two other local schools (Balcarras and Winchcombe) on a project to research and then implement better provision for our highly able students.  As genuine comprehensive schools, we aim to stretch and challenge all students whilst making provision for our very most able both in terms of what they can do in the class room as well as outside learning and extra curricular activities.

The group has been involved in interviewing pupils, study trends and patterns and comparing different ideas used in the three schools in order to try to reach some consensus on a best approach that can be implemented to the advantage of all our pupils. 

We are pleased as a Teaching School to be able to support this initiative.

School Direct Recuitment

It has been a delight over the past couple of months to have met, interviewed and recruited a great bunch of new trainee teachers for our School Direct course, starting in September.  We are now almost full, so no recruiting crisis here!  It has been wonderful to see a variety of applicants, from ex-students and teaching assistants, to a number of career changers, moving to teaching from high ranking jobs in a variety of sectors.

Our Primary School Direct course, starting for the first time this September, is up and running.  We have our first recruits and are actively encouraging more to apply.  The thought of training a bunch of new teachers, using the skills and expertise of this local area, is very exciting and we hope it will be a springboard for future developments as a teaching school. 

We are likely to close our application window for primary at the end of March.  Please get in touch if you are intending to apply, but think you can't make this deadline.

We are still more than happy to receive applications or just to support people looking into teaching with taster days or advice and guidance.  Please do not hesitate but to get in touch.

School to School Support - Beaufort Cooperative Academy

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Our partnership with Beaufort Cooperative Academy in Gloucester has continued to grow this year and we are pleased with the partnership we have developed.

Recent events have included running a training course for unqualified teachers to help them to teach full time tables.  We have been focusing on assessment, questioning, lesson planning, behaviour management.  Each teacher has been helped with observations from an experienced coach and given tailored advice on how to improve their practice.  The effectiveness of these teachers, and their growing confidence, is a delight to see.

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Our Physics department have been supporting Highly Able students in Year 11 at Beaufort to gain the very top grades with a series of after school lectures and presentations about maximising their understanding.

History has been another subject area recieving support, especially as the two schools teach the same GCSEs and have been able to share resources and ideas to help get the best grades possible.

Senior teachers have also been helping the leadership team at Beaufort with their internal reviews and systems to help guide them on their road to progress and improvement.

Gary Bloom - Dealing with the adolescent brain

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We were really pleased today to have Gary Bloom, famous for his TalkSport radio programme and work as a Harley Street clinical psychotherapist, speak to our staff and guests about his work with teenagers to help support and guide them through difficult times at school.

We learnt about how the adolescent brain develops and how it responds to certain stimuli, based upon the psycho-therapeutic theories he bases his work on.  Explained in an engaging and understandable way, it gave us a bit more of an insight into how we work with teenagers, but also how useful his work can be with these pupils.  Gary is currently engaged in a project with some pupils in Year 9 and he was able to give some feedback on how this is helping.  He also gave some great tips and tricks he has learned during his work with adolescents that we can take away and try.

It was a delight to welcome guests, especially from Warrinor School.