13 Sep


Well, I’m back into the swing and don’t I know it!

One moment it’s Monday morning, the next it’s Friday afternoon. When you are busy the week absolutely flies by. So, what have I been up to?

Early in the week a number of colleagues continued work on a Multi Academy Trust growth plan. As you will be aware from previous blogs, our trust receives many requests from others schools to join. So that our trustees can consider them appropriately we have developed a document that allows us to properly assess each application.

The document mentions a number of “non-negotiables”. If schools want to work with us, there is no option other than to agree to these principles:

  • All schools adopt terms and conditions (for all the staff) that, as a minimum, are in line with National terms and conditions. We would expect schools to enhance working conditions wherever possible – our staff are our greatest resource and they have the greatest impact on our children and young people.
  • All schools ensure that the curriculum at Reception, Key Stage 1, 2 and 3 is broad and balanced. This allows all of our youngsters the opportunity to experience a vibrant and interesting learning experience. At the end of Key Stage 3 (when the pupils are 14) all schools should personalise the offer in line with a young person’s skills and aptitude.
  • All schools adopt our 1:1 strategy. Our trust truly believes in the power of technology to change lives. Our schools need to be at the forefront of this revolution.

We are still debating a couple of others!

On Tuesday I travelled to London to be a judge for the annual national NASEN (National Association of Special Educational Needs) awards. NASEN support thousands of practitioners by providing relevant information, training and resources to enable staff to meet all pupils’ needs. It was wonderful to read so many different applications and to see, first hand, some of the amazing practice (and practitioners) up and down the country. Obviously, I am sworn to secrecy about the winners – they will be announced later in the year at an Awards Ceremony.

At the back end of the week I managed to visit a number of our schools and organisations. Everyone seems to have settled well into the new school year. I am slightly frustrated by a couple of the building extensions – particularly at Hollinwood and Hawthorns. They should be further on. We need to accelerate these so that it doesn’t disrupt the learning of the children. Other than these issues everything, touch wood, seems to be settling well.

So, have a great Sunday. For some reason (??) I seem to be doing more DIY on Saturdays due to the demise of Bury FC. Blimey – I’ll have to start supporting Oldham!!!

Best wishes,


You can find all Graham’s previous blog entries here