We all want to achieve the very best for all children and to improve the outcomes for each and every child in Hertfordshire. Colleagues in schools, parents and carers, and the communities that they live in, together with Council Officers and Elected Members are all ambitious to make Hertfordshire a County of Opportunity for all children.
Schools are working very hard with compassion and care to help children and young people experiencing distress in school and support parents and carers.
Aiming for Excellence is a collaboration between School Leaders and Children’s Services to improve outcomes for all children and overcome the difficulties caused by the disruption to education and learning from the pandemic.
As Governors we know that schools and students are in challenging times. Referrals for SEND are at an all time high, children and young people are telling us that their mental health is poor, school attendance is a concern and has reduced, that the outcomes for children, particularly for the most vulnerable to education disadvantage, have fallen and the attainment gap has widened, eradicating much of the hard-won gains made pre-pandemic.
What can School Governors do to help?
In Hertfordshire we acknowledge that our systems need review. We know that colleagues working in schools, parents and caregivers, local communities, council officers and elected members and school governors are ambitious for each and every child in the county.
- Our mission is to reflect, rethink and reset the system for all children and young people, driving the change needed through a Head Teacher and Local Authority Collaborative that has already identified actions to make to make a substantial change to the way pupils and staff in school experience the process of education. Clear promotion of the vision and why now is the right time for change by delivering a presentation of the core principles at every possible educational meeting in the summer term 2023.
- Commitment to and investment in high quality affordable professional learning for the entire school staff throughout the academic years 2023-24/25 to develop a trauma-aware workforce who understand and use relational practice to improve outcomes for children and young people.
- Regular reports of high-quality data and research evidence shared and used intelligently to strengthen ambition and inform about what works to schools and in the delivery of Children’s Services
- Building on existing Hertfordshire communities of learning that share practice within and across schools in the summer term 2023 and beyond.
- A comprehensive and regular communication strategy to engage the support of parents and carers, children and young people, teachers and local authority officers, Trustees and School Governors.
As a Governor or Trustee you can:
- Give commitment to and investment in high quality affordable professional learning for the entire school staff throughout the academic years 2023-24/25 to develop a trauma-aware workforce who understand and use relational practice to improve outcomes for children and young people. You and your colleagues on the Governing or Trustee Board can then Reflect on the culture of you school and what could or should be altered.
- Encourage and enable your school staff to participate in the Learning Offer. The online training made available by the ‘When the Adults Change’ is affordable and effective at £37.50 per license. A small Primary school for example will need only to invest in 2 licenses.
- Discuss the Behaviour Policy Checklist from the Kinder by Design portfolio available to School Governors on the Virtual School website at a full Governors meeting. With your school senior leaders, Rethink the Behavior policy so that it fits on one side of A4 and that it also fits your vision for your school.
- Collaborate with other local schools and settings to share what works and to learn from each other to help Reset the day-to-day experience in school for both children and young people and the whole staff team.
You will find out more information in the following ways:
- The Autumn Chairs bulletin/Chairs portal in September
- A training course for all Governors delivered by Marcus Cooper and Felicity Evans booked through HfL Governance Training:
Improving outcomes for Each and Every Child (Via MS Teams)
- Autumn Term date still TBC
- Tues 27 February 2024, 7-9pm
- Tues 11 June 2024, 7-9pm
3. Regular articles in The Hertfordshire Governor.
4. Reminder information in the ‘What You Need to Know’ section at the Chairs Briefing.
5. A live presentation on the progress of the Aiming for Excellence strategy for each and every child at the Chairs Briefing on 5 March 2024.