It’s been a brilliant week.
The central team (well, Rita and Moira) have developed a brilliant monitoring system called the ADDO – the Academy Development and Dashboard Overview. In a nutshell it allows everyone – staff, governors and trustees – to:
- Celebrate and communicate excellent and emerging practice
- Monitor the impact of 1:1 iPads in schools
- Analyse leadership and management
- Explore the progress and attainment of all groups of young people
- Ensure that our buildings are fit for purpose and being used in the most appropriate way by our communities
- Confirm that our young people are kept safe
- Check whether we can improve anything for our staff teams
- Confirm that the money we receive is being used appropriately
So, this week we have met with the leadership teams from New Bridge Learning Centre, New Bridge School, Medita and Hollinwood Academy. It’s been absolutely marvellous to really understand the strengths within our schools. I’ve seen and heard examples of QR codes being used to prompt activities in the workplace; the power of our pastoral systems when it comes to supporting our youngsters’ health issues; how iPads are transforming learning with some of our youngest children (and those with real barriers to learning) and how employers are now clamouring to offer our young people the opportunity to work.
A number of development themes are starting to emerge, especially with regards to further work on our assessment dashboard system. It is becoming apparent that we need to be more overt about the future planned destinations for all our young people. The link between what the children and young people are taught on a daily basis needs to link (more transparently) towards their future desirable pathway. We have conducted rigorous research into the destinations of our leavers for the past 10 or so years. Almost all of them fall into the following categories. They are:
Being Independent ~ you may be living independently and/or in paid employment (16 hours+ or more), you could be attending FE/University/HE.
Working with support in my community ~ you may be perhaps living in semi supported living or living away from the family home. You may get occasional paid work, you’ve probably had lots of experience in volunteering and you will probably access regular community facilities.
Volunteering in my community ~ you will probably be living with a family or (with some support) in community placements, you will access community placements maybe with some support volunteering in local industry/businesses etc.
Playing a part in my community ~ you will be accessing day (type) provision, maybe using a personal assistant and (with support) to have some of the skills to start to explore living within a home setting. (With support) you will access community clubs etc.
Taking control ~ you’ve got the aptitude and skills to stay within the local area/community. You may need to be supported by a range of different adults. You may have the ability to make independent decisions/choices about your life.
Taking part ~ you’ve got the aptitude and skills to stay within the local area/community. You may need to supported by your family (and/or named and familiar adults) who may have support you with decisions.
Being Involved ~ you will have the aptitude and skills to stay within the local area/community. You may need to be supported by consistent people. You will need considerable support (by named adults) to ensure you have a high quality of life.
The ADDO meetings so far are suggesting that we need to do more work on both the practical processes and the communication of this work. I’m really looking forward to getting stuck in!
Anyway, a similar week next week awaits via a Yorkshire detour. I’m presenting at a conference in Wakefield at the end of the week.
You can find all Graham’s previous blog entries here