Investing in our staff
Central to the success of any school is the right blend of knowledge, skills, experience, motivation and leadership. Investing in our team is essential to growing excellence and inspiring success. We work in strong partnership, close collaboration and effective participation with a diverse range of educational partners and organisations, who are leaders in their areas of expertise.
NSS National Support School
Ladygrove Park is a National Support School, which means that the Headteacher and leadership teams are able to officially support other local schools, in different aspects of improvement and development.
The Headteacher is a NLE (National Leader of Education). NLEs are outstanding headteachers who, together with the staff in their National Support School, use their skills and experience to support schools in challenging circumstances. In addition to leading their own schools, NLEs work to increase the leadership capacity of other schools to help raise standards.
The Headteacher is also a School Improvement Partner for the Local Authority, which supports Ladygrove in professional knowledge sharing.
EEx Early Excellence Centre for Inspirational Learning
We commissioned two bespoke action research projects, centred around key stage 1.
The first project focused on key aspects of teaching and learning and increasing teacher knowledge and understanding of how best to support, challenge and extend children’s thinking and learning across Key Stage 1 – with a focus on Year 1, and enquiry led learning.
The follow-up project focused on progression in the curriculum areas below and looking at the relationship between the teaching of key skills, planning and provision/resources, with an understanding of national EYFS issues:
- Expressive Arts and Design
- Understanding the World
- (Geography and History strands)
- Science, Technology and Engineering
BBO Maths Hub
Ladygrove Park is a partner school of the Bucks, Berks and Oxon Maths Hub, supported by NCETM (National Centre for Excellence in Teaching Mathematics).
The BBO Hub runs development projects to develop and spread excellent practice for the benefit of all pupils. CPD is focused on collaborative, evidence-based professional development, which offers teachers in all phases the chance to engage with the specialist leads and colleagues from from other schools, over extended periods of time.
The school’s Maths Lead is a designated LLME Local Leader of Maths Education, who coordinates and leads work group CPD for BBO, and who leads Maths teaching and learning in our school and uses her expertise to support colleagues in our own as well as other schools in our locality and partnerships.
The Headteacher is a member of the BBO Strategic Board.
Ladygrove Park is a Strategic Partner in the Oxfordshire Teaching School Alliance. The partner schools work together to have a positive impact on teaching and learning through collaboration, by: providing mutual challenge and support; by exchanging knowledge, skills and ideas; by identifying shared CPD needs and organising CPD opportunities; by engaging in action research opportunities.
The school has played a key role, at all levels of staff participation (from SLT to Subject/ Pedagogy Leaders to Classteacher Mentors to NQTs and now ECTs and training Associate Teachers) in support of the Cherwell OTSA SCITT, which is focussed on supporting the state education system across Oxfordshire.
The SCITT (school centred initial teacher training) is a schools-led partnership, whose collaborative work has had substantial impact on recruitment, training and retention of the highest quality teachers, across the county and beyond.
NCETM Mastering Number Project
Is a major new initiative from the NCETM and Maths Hubs. We applied and have been accepted to participate in the year-long programme, which has been running in thousands of primary schools from September. It is aimed at strengthening the understanding of number, and fluency with number facts, among children in the first three years of school.
Mastering Number is wholly consistent with and complementary to the TfM Teaching for Mastery Programme, and the Lead teacher participants (teachers of Reception, Year 1 and Year 2) are receiving training and resources, equipping them to give their class a daily short ‘number sense’ session as part of scheduled maths teaching.
NCETM’s Director for Primary Mathematics, Debbie Morgan:
‘We call this ‘number sense’, and research tells us that if children develop fluency and flexibility with number facts and relationships early on, they will make much more progress later, in both maths and other subjects.’
Oxford University & Nuffield Foundation Projects
The school’s Early Years SLE (Specialist Leader of Education) participated in a project, led by the University of Oxford and funded by the Nuffield Foundation (whose mission is to advance educational opportunity and social well-being) to investigate how early attention and executive functions skills can predict not only numeracy skills, but also how they improve over the preschool period.
You can read a very brief summary here: https://www.psy.ox.ac.uk/research/attention-brain-and-cognitive-development-group/Projects/AttentionNumber
Currently, our EYFS Lead has been invited to join the advisory board of a new project, again led by Oxford University (Department of Experimental Psychology) and funded by the Nuffield Foundation, to co-develop a combined preschool intervention geared at improving numeracy via executive and number games in preschool.