Children and teachers across Cheshire are set to benefit from a brand-new free-of-charge teacher development programme, centred around The Wade Deacon High School in Widnes which will act as a ‘hub’ school or training base for participating teachers across the area. Schools in Halton are being targeted in particular.
Run by educational charity, Education Development Trust in partnership with the Chartered College of Teaching, the Accelerate programme will provide free training and support to teachers in their first five years of teaching as part of a Government drive to improve pupil attainment and keep talented teachers within the profession.
Teacher retention is a key focus for the education sector, highlighted by the Government’s recently published Recruitment and Retention Strategy which is the first of its kind. A key priority of the strategy is to transform support for early career teachers through The Early Career Framework, Accelerate already delivers on this commitment by providing specialist support to help early career teachers quickly become more effective and efficient in the classroom.
Recent statistics released from the Department for Education (DfE) showed that 12% of mainstream secondary schools fell below expected standards in 2018. Halton has already been designated as priority areas by the Department for Education which means that the area is able to access funding to boost pupil attainment.
Accelerate aims to help tackle existing problems in schools by helping teachers face common challenges such as managing workload, dealing with challenging classroom behaviour and supporting students with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND). It will also provide a strong network of peers across the region and support teachers with a highly trained subject or phase specific instructional coach.
The course has been designed around flexible blended learning; ensuring the right mix of high quality face-to-face and online content. This means participants can access the materials they need at their convenience, taking into account the demands of the classroom.
As well as supporting schools in Cheshire, the region’s hub school will have a wide reach, supporting teachers from Liverpool, Knowsley, Sefton, St Helen’s and more. Speaking about the Accelerate programme, Jen Murphy, Director of The Wade Deacon Trust Teaching School said:
“Agreeing to be a delivery hub for Accelerate was a very easy decision. What a fantastic way to support our early careers teachers as they embark on their journey inspiring and developing our students into young people well equipped for the challenges of the future. Through the work and collaboration with expert coaches, early careers teachers will be supported in all aspects of their practice to ensure that the students in our area have the chance to be the best they can be.”
Matt Davis, Regional Director UK, Education Development Trust said:
“Education Development Trust is delighted to be delivering Accelerate across Cheshire. Informed by our extensive programme of educational research, the scheme will help support and motivate teachers at the start of their careers, helping to deliver improvements for schools, and most importantly, children across the country. I call on more schools in the county to sign up to this exciting initiative”.
The scheme will begin from the end of January onwards with the launch of an online learning portal and the start of local induction events in February and March. Teachers and heads are strongly advised to sign up now in order to secure a place as these are being offered on a first- come -first -served basis.