Best Practice

Literacy: Who is the Secret Storyteller?

Milton Primary School’s Secret Storyteller project, which brings parents into school to read to children, has been an enormous success. Christine Dean explains how it works


Go with the ‘flow’: Pedagogy in the EYFS

The ideal scenario for early years play-based learning is children who are naturally keen to explore and adults who know when to step back and when to intervene. Melody Lowe explains


Setting up a primary school nurture group

Drawing on the work of South Rise Primary School, Jo Corrigan considers what makes nurture group provision successful, the impact it has on children and their families, and offers advice for schools


Reviewing and shaping your curriculum

When she took up her current post as headteacher, Lyndsey King set about reviewing her school’s curriculum offer. She talks us through the approaches her school took and the lessons learned


Flexible working: A recruitment solution?

The difficulties schools are having in recruiting teachers continue to dominate the headlines. The DfE wants us to consider the option of flexible working. Just how might this work?


Safeguarding: Are you covering all bases?

Creating and maintaining a culture of safety is a priority for all primary schools. National Leader of Education and headteacher Helen Frostick advises on preparing and embedding effective practices and satisfying Ofsted requirements


Refocusing your approach to pupil assessment

With major changes afoot in both England and Wales, schools are under pressure to develop effective approaches to pupil assessment. As a new and free resource is published to help, Claire Hodgson offers some evidence-based guidance on how schools can develop their own approaches to assessment


Governance: Building your team

The role of the chair of governors and governing body in a school is vital. Ian Armitage looks at the attributes that effective boards – and effective chairs – need to succeed


Leadership: The vision thing...

Almost every school has a vision statement but the trick is making sure that those words become a platform for action. Primary head Paul Jackson shares his approach with Liam Donnison


Behaviour guidance with a sharp, no-nonsense edge

Behaviour tsar Tom Bennett’s guidance contains some strong messages about behaviour in our schools. It also promotes a hard line. Suzanne O’Connell considers its main messages and how they apply to primary schools



National Leaders of Education

Headteacher Cathy Longhurst discusses the process of becoming a National Leader of Education, what is involved in the role, and the benefits that being an NLE can have


Leadership profile: A passion for diversity and education

Earlier this year, headteacher Marva Rollins received an OBE for services to education. A passionate supporter of diversity in education, she is keen to support high-performing teachers from the female and BME workforce. Jo Corrigan speaks to her to find out more about her life and work



Ideas for the summer...

As the end of the year approaches, Fiona Aubrey-Smith speaks to headteachers from across the country who share a range of practical ideas to support pupil (and teacher) learning this summer term and into the school holidays




Teachers on Twitter: Is it CPD?

A lot of teachers will wax lyrical about the power of Twitter when it comes to sharing resources and best practice, but what exactly should be its role in our CPD? Maria Cunningham advises



Workload audit: Thirty questions for your school

We all know that teachers work well beyond their designated hours, but just how can heads help to adjust the work/life balance for their staff? Drawing on the government’s Workload Survey and expert working groups, Suzanne O’Connell poses 30 self-evaluation questions for schools


Conducting a teaching assistant audit

Are your school’s teaching assistants effective? Or perhaps we should ask: do you train, deploy and manage them effectively. Daniel Sobel says that poor use of TAs can harm student outcomes. He explains how to carry out an effective audit of your TA provision



Relationships education: What should we expect?

The campaign has been long and difficult, but at last those determined to see the introduction of statutory relationships and sex education have been rewarded. What can primary headteachers expect now as the discussions and consultations set in? Suzanne O’Connell reports


Assessment consultation – is it too little, too late?

The year 2016 perhaps marked the worst year in primary national assessment history. Now the DfE has launched its promised consultation to find out what the way forward for primary assessment might be. But is it asking the right questions and has too much been decided already?


Lessons learned from creating a Teaching School Alliance: Part 2

In March, we asked a headteacher, writing anonymously, to describe the process their school has been through in becoming a Teaching School and in leading a Teaching School Alliance. Our writer continues their account now, focusing on the ‘lessons learned’ so far...

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