Continuing Professional Development & Training School Concept

Continuing Professional Development & Training School Concept:

One of the Academy’s most successful areas in recent years has been the continuing professional development of all members of the Academy community, no matter what stage they are at in their teaching career.   This will continue to be an area that the Academy is fully committed to. The Leadership Team and Governors believe that a key means of improving standards of teaching and learning is through developing the skills and knowledge of all our staff, helping to enable both them and their students to reach their full potential. The following provides a brief summary of how we go about this:


1. Initial Teacher Training

We have a well-established history of providing excellent training for trainee teachers on a range of routes.  As part of the Aspirations Academies Trust (AAT) vision, we are actively embracing and innovating in the changing Teacher Training landscape which is seeing schools take a leading role in training the teachers of tomorrow.  However, just like for our own students, we believe in meeting the needs of the individual.  Click here to see the range of new and tried and tested routes into teaching that we offer.


2. NQTs

The Academy has a strong and well established programme for inducting NQTs, including a three week induction process in July, strong departmental support, regular meetings and training sessions, a team of experienced mentors, a full programme of observations and feedback. Wherever possible, NQTs are employed by the Academy from July, allowing NQTs 2-3 weeks induction in departments before each new academic year.


3. Weekly CPD programme

On most Thursdays, a 45-60 minute training session is available for various cohorts. Sessions are open to all staff although directed to particular cohorts, e.g. NQTs new staff; support staff; and Middle Leaders/Heads of Department. A calendar of events is published at the start of the Academy year, though inevitably it is subject to change.


4. Residential Programme

For a number of years we have organised a Middle Leaders Residential to launch our training programme for curriculum Team Leaders/Heads of Department.


5. Observation and feedback

The Academy strongly believes that this is key area in enabling staff to improve on their own practice. Observations take place in many different forms at the Academy: by Curriculum Team Leaders, NQT Mentors, LT, peers and visitors to the Academy. We also have a system of learning walks that provides us with an overview of learning and teaching practice in the Academy together with a comprehensive internal and external departmental review process.


6. Inset

The Academy has a full and varied programme of Inset days and evenings. More recent Inset has focused on such issues as Assessment for Learning and New Technologies.


7. External training

The Academy has an outstanding record in encouraging and enabling staff to attend training outside of the Academy itself, believing that this helps us to constantly improve our own practice. Within the limitations created by cover requirements and funding, the LT believes that external courses and meetings help to continually bring in fresh ideas to the Academy.


8. Further degrees and qualifications

The Academy has an excellent record of funding/partially funding applications for further courses, including MA degrees, NPQH, Leading from the Middle and Future Leaders.


9. In-House training programmes

The Academy has very experienced and well trained staff who themselves are able to facilitate training courses for individuals or groups of staff depending on which stage of their career they are at. We offer all staff the opportunity to develop their own practice and professional knowledge.


10. Coaching

The coaching scheme assumes that staff within the Academy are themselves 'life-long learners’ and open to feedback from colleagues on their learning and teaching practice. The scheme will contribute to the:

•Enhancement of learning and teaching across the departments;

•Professional development of staff through the identification of staff development needs;

•Openness of a learning and teaching culture across the Academy.