17 Jan

Graham

I’m delighted (just for you Lauren) that my blogs are now back online. My thanks go to our technical team who have ensured everything is back to normal.

It would be remiss for me not to start this week’s blog with a huge congratulations to all the New Bridge School staff. We received the final report from Ofsted earlier in the week. As some of you will recall inspectors visited the school, Learning Centre and Medtia (as well as calling in on our many community partners) in December. The overall judgement is that the school, as a whole, remains outstanding. This is extremely good news. The new Ofsted framework, that was introduced in September 2019, is much more challenging than the previous one. The report should be on the Ofsted website in the next few days.

Many of the New Bridge staff have been integral to our journey over the last number of years, the greater majority are new to our Trust and to working with children and young people. The overwhelming principle that bonds all the staff is their unwavering commitment to, as Ofsted quote, “ambition”. Ambition comes in many forms. The definition of it in the Oxford English Dictionary states “a strong desire to do or achieve something, typically requiring determination and hard work”.

I’d like to pick up on the end of this quote, determination and hard work. At times, over that last few years it could have been easier for some of the staff to have not gone on such and such residential, or give up their evenings for a sporting or arts event, to not do that extra planning or make that resource. The list could go on. Our teams are resilient. They have an innate sense that what they do makes a difference. They want what’s best for our children and young people. If you’ve been with us through thick and thin – thank you. If you’re new to school – thank you. What we achieve together is truly inspirational and remarkable.

Last week I spoke about a “national award” and I’m delighted to be able to tell you that one of our young people, Jordan, has been nominated in an outstanding achievement category in the British Education Awards. He, and his family and guests, have been invited to the Hilton Hotel, in Manchester, at the end of this month. Best of luck Jordan, but a nomination on its own is a huge accolade.

This week I’ve been involved in various pieces of work that look at moving our Trust forward. Last year’s election has made managing our strategy over the next few years a little easier. The present government has signalled its intention for all schools, over the next number of years, to become more independent and autonomous through both the free schools and academy programme. This certainty allows us to plan more effectively. Our planning sessions this week have embraced this certainty. Planning for excellence over the next 5 years is essential for our collective “ambitions”.

Have a great weekend,

Graham

You can find all Graham’s previous blog entries here