Best Practice



CPD at the heart of school improvement

A small primary school in Cornwall has become a CPD powerhouse after placing professional development at the heart of its school improvement plans. Yvonne Gandy takes a look






Reception Year: The Birth to Five Matters Guidance

With a revised Early Years Foundation Stage becoming statutory in September, the early years sector has united to produce research-led guidance offering a pedagogically sound method of delivery. Neil Henty looks at its implications for primary schools and Reception year teaching


SENCOs under siege

The Covid-19 pandemic has heaped much more pressure on an already stretched SEND system. Daniel Sobel considers the key problems and outlines how we must move forward


Maintaining high expectations for learners using EAL

That a student uses English as an additional language should not be an excuse for lowering our expectations for learning and progress. Kamil Trzebiatowski considers some strategies and resources to ensure high expectations in your lessons





'The first thing I invested in was the school library'

The library must sit at the heart of our teaching and learning environments. Former headteacher, Richard Gerver – the new president of the School Library Association – explains why school libraries have never been more important and looks at some tenets of good practice


LGBT+ teaching within relationships education

If a child is not too young to learn about heterosexual relationships, they are not too young to learn about same-sex relationships. Emma Fay from charity Just Like Us advises on how we can ensure relationships education is LGBT-inclusive



Introducing dogs safely into the primary school

Animals have long been used in primary schools – especially dogs. Dr Helen Lewis and Dr Russell Grigg, authors of Tails from the Classroom, take a practical look at how dogs can be used in primary schools and offer six steps for their safe introduction


Effective remote CPD: Five practical tips

The recent review of the evidence around remote CPD for teaching staff has outlined approaches that could prove effective, including by using video and coaching. Nihad Cehic considers five ideas for how schools can used video as part of remote CPD


Relationships and projects: A new curriculum focus post-Covid?

As we develop our curriculum for after Covid, we must focus on nurturing children’s relationships with parents, peers and staff and developing their vital characteristics and skills. Julie Norman considers some ideas, including the role that a project-based learning approach can play


Remote education framework: Evaluating your provision

The LEARNERs’ Trust has developed its own framework for its schools to use to evaluate the effectiveness of their remote education provision. CEO Matt Freeston explains how they are using it to identify and share good practice across the trust


Ideas for working with hard-to-reach families

Every school will have some families with which it is difficult to engage, and often these are the families of our more vulnerable learners. Dr Pooky Knightsmith looks at why this might be and offers some practical ideas


Curriculum planning and delivery during a pandemic

Curriculum planning and delivery at a time of such disruption to education is challenging to say the least. Lekha Sharma considers how primary schools can plan ahead and prepare their curriculum for the rest of 2021 and beyond…


Assurance: It’s not sexy, but it’s important

From boilers to putrefied rat remains, from magic buckets to burglar alarms – assurance is not well understood in education and the consequences can be catastrophic. MAT chief executive Mark Wilson explains



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