15. Continuous Professional Development

A key strength of this school is that all staff sing to the same hymn sheet. This has not happened by chance.  Over time, individual attitudes, whole school ethos and confidence in practice has grown.  This has been nurtured and supported by the headteacher and her senior managers. However, as confidence has grown many other staff now feel able to demonstrate and share their own individual knowledge and skills so that the school is a truly learning establishment in its own right.   An example of extending leadership for learning involves a Support for Learning Assistant (SfLA) whose skills had been recognised by a Speech & Language Therapist. The SfLA undertook Makaton training and subsequently became a Makaton tutor, delivering training to her colleagues during Twilight sessions.  The school has now purchased Makaton Manuals and the level of Makaton understanding and practice has significantly increased. Other SfLAs take the lead in rebound therapy and moving and handling training.

In line with Authority policy, formal timetabled Employee Review & Development (ERD) meetings allow each practitioner to discuss their strengths and needs with their line manager.  Support structures are put in place where needed and training needs identified.

In so far as formal training is concerned, the school undertakes a skills audit which is shown here.  Information from the audit is collated in a database to quickly identify current training needs across the school.

Prompt for Reflection
How well do you know how you are doing?

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