The Alliance for Learning Teaching School
- they are able to identify best practices in teaching and learning;
- they provide a structure in which to share these practices internally and externally;
- their school leaders have the skills and confidence to share and deploy best practices; and
- they create a climate in which there is a practical and moral incentive to share best practices between schools.
At AGGS we believe wholeheartedly in the power of collaboration to improve outcomes for children and young people. The academic, social and personal development of our own students is our first priority. However, having built our capacity over many years, we are also committed to supporting other schools, both within the BFET family and beyond. In doing so we learn a great deal from our partner schools which can be applied here at AGGS. The Alliance for Learning, led by AGGS, is a partnership of over sixty organisations, including primary, secondary, special schools and colleges of further education.
The benefits of a teaching school are myriad. As well as learning from other schools, the staff and students at AGGS benefit from high quality staff training, opportunities to try new and innovative ways of working first and of course a plethora of really useful partnerships. Our subject networks allow our teachers to reduce work load and learn from each other and our outreach school improvement work gives our staff leadership opportunities that they just would not have access to without our teaching school.
We have a number of specialist leaders of education (SLEs) here at AGGS which means that whilst supporting other schools, AGGS staff are able to bring the very best practice back and ensure that we are always operating with the most impact. We take an evidenced-based approach to all we do and this has encouraged our staff to embed research into daily practice.
Our School Centred Initial Teaching Training (SCITT) is also an integral part of the Teaching School. First and foremost we are passionate about teaching and want to inspire others with a love for educating the next generation. In addition, we are proactive about the supply and recruitment of teachers both for AGGS and for our partner schools. Having our own SCITT allows us to plan ahead for subject shortages and grow the very best teachers ourselves.
In terms of classroom practice, research confirms that school-based teacher education has a positive impact on schools who are training teachers. It does so in a number of ways including by boosting school resources, by providing more adult helpers in the classroom and by bringing in new knowledge and skills. Also, “training-active” schools achieve better outcomes in terms of examination results than those schools that are not involved in school-based teacher training. As well as the positive impact on pupil outcomes, these opportunities to host trainee teachers allow current staff to reflect upon and improve their own practice; it gives them a platform for professional learning and benefits the school in terms of teacher retention and recruitment.
To find out more about the Alliance for Learning Teaching School please visit our website – www.allianceforlearning.co.uk