ELE designation for Trust staff
Well done to three members of our Trust staff who have been designated as Evidence Leads in Education to give specialist support, both to their own schools and to others across the region.
ELEs are outstanding teachers, who are middle and senior leaders with the skills to support individuals or teams in similar positions in other schools. They understand what outstanding leadership of evidence-informed school improvement looks like and are skilled in helping other leaders to achieve it in their own context.
Kelly Herbert from Corby Business Academy, Liam Benner from Beanfield Primary School and James Lee from Corby Technical School underwent individual interviews in which they detailed how they are using research evidence to drive school improvement.
Kelly Herbert, who is Head of Year 9 and currently overseeing the Design & Technology faculty, said: ‘I came to Corby Business Academy in September and I am keen to progress my professional development as well as support the academy in achieving their high expectations within behaviour, attendance and the welfare of our students.
'My previous experience is within a pastoral context and I delivered a presentation during my interview, relating to how I could help other schools and colleagues develop their knowledge and understanding of the barriers which our students face on a day to day basis, so that we can work collaboratively to build aspirations and build on the characters of our learners.
‘The lockdown and restrictions have had a massive effect on the lives of our learners and student care will be at the forefront of all schools, to help rebuild routines and the confidence of our young people.
‘I was an achievement leader in my previous school and that allowed me to look after a cohort of 200 children who were vertically tutored. I took on a number of whole school initiatives such as leading on Health & Wellbeing programmes and Relationships & Sex Education, both of which supported the completion of my NPQML.
‘It speaks volumes that, in such a short time period with Corby Business Academy and the Brooke Weston Trust, I have been given the opportunity to lead and support colleagues with new initiatives and research. Principal Simon Underwood and the rest of the Senior Leadership Team know that I am keen to move to an SLT role and they have been absolutely fantastic in terms of my helping me build on my professional development.’
Liam Benner, who is the Year 5 Lead at Beanfield, said: ‘I am really looking forward to the ELE role as I have always been really interested in improving my own practice and helping other people improve theirs. This has been something to really get my teeth into and make an impact on a wider scale.
‘I like to think of myself as someone who will try new things. I am always questioning and asking "is there a better way?" The ELE role is heavily based on research and I am really into getting out there and researching new ways of doing things.
‘I have been working with Gemma Marks and other colleagues to create a Research Hub where staff from across the Trust can find current research on a variety of areas and collaborate with each other.
‘I want to show our students that they can do something if they put their minds to it. It is my goal over the next few years to be on the senior leadership team and my ultimate ambition is to be a Headteacher. At the moment I can just impact my year group whereas becoming a head teacher means I could have an impact on a whole range of children.’
James Lee, who is second in Maths at Corby Technical School, said: ‘I have been engaging with educational research and looking to put that into practice at CTS. I am really looking forward to working with colleagues in other schools, being able to coach and guide them to use evidence based research to drive school improvement.
‘I am interested in retrieval practice with research into the working memory and how to get students to know more and remember it for longer. It is research that is transferable to multiple subjects.
‘What we are trying to do is to be as informed as possible so the changes we make are the most effective. It is being quite confident that what we have researched will work and translate into classroom practice.
‘I have previously facilitated collaboration with peer to peer school visits for Trust Maths Heads of Department and also shadowed VP Linda Arnold in her SLE role. My ELE designation will be exciting and helpful, not only for CTS, but for the Trust as a whole. It is the collaborative aspect that is most exciting about it.’
James has been a teacher at CTS since qualifying: ‘It has been really exciting to be part of CTS’s expansion and growth and that has given everybody the opportunity to be part of a massive change, to be creative and make sure we are providing the best quality education for our students. We are quite a tight knit school with so much passion and enthusiasm for helping students and I love it here.’
Gemma Marks, the Director of the newly designated Brooke Weston Training Hub said: ‘I am delighted that three leading practitioners from schools within our Trust have received this designation. The ELE role is at the cutting edge of system leadership and place Kelly, Liam and James at the forefront of supporting schools in Northamptonshire to engage in evidence-led practice. In partnership with Learn-AT Associate Research School, my ambition is that Kelly, Liam and James will be joined by further staff from within Brooke Weston Trust in the future. ‘