29 Nov

Graham

Hi everyone, I hope you’ve had a great week. It’s been a little less hectic in our organisations, but needless to say we’ve been kept on our toes!

Earlier in the week we held our Spring Brook and Springboard Project invitational meetings. The staff teams, executive teams and trustees were able to share great practice. Spring Brook Lower highlighted the work the children are completing in Reading. It really is super. To see the children succeeding in their reading tasks was quite emotional. Their sense of achievement was palpable. The Upper site focused on how the young people have felt during the pandemic and their subsequent return to school. It was wonderful to hear how the vast majority really valued the school and their relationships with our staff.

Springboard gave us an insight into their community projects. More to come on this but it’s so exciting for us all.

What shone through in these 3 sites was how aspirational the children had become. They were quite open about taking of jobs, living independently, owning a car etc. etc. We loved that!

We also had Hawthorns invitational meeting. Their good practice review explored the revised Pathways. It was super to see and hear how our organisations constantly adapt to the meet the changing needs of the children. The Pathways offer really precise and bespoke teaching methods, curriculum content and structures. It clearly gives the children the greatest chance to learn. It’s one of the reasons Hawthorns is so popular. A child centred approach built upon a set of really clear values and principles. I know Pierre has shared our plans regarding the proposed re-development of Hawthorns. I’m looking forward to really getting “stuck in” and working with you all in the New Year.

Finally we met with our team at the New Bridge College and Future Finders. The young people, well Alex, had produced and directed a film. It brilliantly showed the amazing progress our youngsters make. NBC and FF is an amazing organisation that will be available to all children in the MAT (who require a college offer) for years to come. I am certain it will grow from strength to strength. When we set our mind to something, we really deliver.

This week we’ve also heard the news about the revised Tier system. To be honest it doesn’t make a great deal of difference to our schools. We’re still dealing with very high incidents of transmission in our communities that lead to bubbles bursting and significant disruption to the operation of the schools. I’ve met with our HR teams regarding the staffing implications of these new arrangements – news to follow in the next couple of days.

We’ve got news about Horizons. Most of the bubbles are re-opening on Monday. Let’s hope we can avoid any more confirmed cases and stay open?

I can’t believe it’s only 3 more weeks until we break up! I don’t know about you but I’ll be quite pleased to see the back of 2020.

I’m hopeful that the new year will allow us to move away from the day to day operational and into the world of “planning for the future”. New schools, new buildings, improved resources all supported by the very best staff teams is within our grasp. Let’s get back to those discussions rather than “another bubble’s popped”. Let’s start to watch our bubbles fly again. It’s what we are brilliant at.

Stay safe,

Graham

You can find all Graham’s previous updates and blog entries here