CEO Blog - Destinations Champions I can't quite believe that we've made it to December already, but here we are, and the countdown to Christmas is well and truly underway! This week, I would like to point you all in the direction of our newest New Bridge...
Our gallery shows a selection of photographs from across our Academy.
CEO Blog - 24.11.23 Happy Friday, everyone. I'm keeping it brief this week, but I wanted to give you an update on what's been going on behind the scenes at New Bridge... I met with the Directors at New Bridge Horizons, talking about the exciting partnerships we build...
CEO Blog - 17.11.23 This week has been another busy week for all of us at New Bridge, and I'm proud of our staff teams for pulling together and continuing to offer our students and young people the very best, even when it's already dark by the time most of them are...
CEO Blog - 10.11.23 This week, it has been good to see each of our sites commemorating Remembrance Day in their own way. The creativity and thought that our staff have put into these 'Remembrance' themed activities is brilliant, and testament to their ingenuity. It...
CEO Blog (3.11.23) - Welcome Back To everyone who has just had half term, I want to say, 'welcome back', and that I hope you had the opportunity to spend some quality time with friends and family over the break. This first term is usually the toughest, and the October...
Happy New Year everyone. I really hope that all our young people, their families, our staff teams and numerous friends have another successful year.
It’s been very much business as usual this week. On Monday I managed to get around all our sites to wish everyone best wishes and ensure we had a quick catch up.
On Tuesday morning we held our weekly admissions panel. As you know, different local authorities send applications to our admissions team and each individual school spends considerable time discussing whether we can meet each individual child’s needs. When we introduced this process, a couple of years ago, we often discussed three to four children each week. On Tuesday we had over 40 applications!! The teams barely touched the surface. The reality of dealing with so many requests meant that a significant amount of time at the end of the week was spent working with senior colleagues from our trust and from different local authorities.
I really believe 2019 needs to be the year when we start to establish a different strategy regarding young people with additional needs. Our schools will become too big and lose their individual identity if we let this burgeoning trend (children coming into our existing schools) continue. If our trust does not take a lead in developing an “inclusive continuum of provision” then the pressure our schools face (with regards to numbers) will become intolerable.
As National Leaders of Education, both myself and Moira Thompson (our headteacher coach) have meetings scheduled in the next few days and weeks with local authority colleagues. We need to explore innovations such as:
- commissioning high quality outreach provision
- sharing admission arrangements
- using technology to support virtual teaching and learning
- developing learning campuses
- providing improved alternative (extended) vocational offers
- exploring whether some of our schools need “residential type” provision.
All of these (and many other initiatives) are tentatively labelled as our “heading east” strategy.
I know a few people are concerned that our trust and our schools are becoming too big and are changing their character. I honestly believe that by doing nothing, the risk to our schools would be even more considerable. We have to diversify to ensure our individual identities can be protected. Our personalised offer – ensuring that every single one of our children and young people has the very best chance to progress and succeed – has to be protected. If this means we have to influence schools and organisations outside of our trust, so be it. If it means that we have to grow our trust, so be it. Doing nothing is too much of a risk. We will work with our local partners to generate policy and practice – we will work with our National and International partners to generate momentum.
In next week’s blog I’m hoping to be able to share some exciting news and ideas regarding our Horizons provision.
We may as well start the year as we intend to go on!!
Thank you for all your Christmas gifts and best wishes. I am so looking forward to another amazing year.
You can find all Graham’s previous blog entries here
New Bridge Multi Academy Trust
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