Leadership Programme for Plymouth Secondary Schools

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An Education Endowment Foundation/Plymouth City Council sponsored Leadership Programme for all Plymouth Secondary Schools.

A modular programme based on the EEF’s guidance and rooted in the latest research, this professional development programme will enable your teachers to make confident decisions that will help your pupils access the complexities of the new curriculum in every subject.

Over nine modules, some synchronous and some asynchronous, participants will develop a deep understanding of what the research says makes for effective teaching of disciplinary (subject-specific) literacy, and apply this in their schools.

Participants will be given a wealth of strategies for vocabulary instruction, reading and writing in every subject discipline.

Find Out More 

Resources and Slides are available here for the recent 'Programme Launch Event'.

Training and Retaining Great Teachers

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This is part of the EEF Leadership programme and will explore the best available evidence on continuous professional development and draw on a range of EEF guidance reports and insights from programme evaluations.  Senior Leaders attending this programme will develop a robust plan to support every teacher in their school/Trust and develop the skills and knowledge to build on schools’ already existing CPD programmes.  It is aimed at senior leaders with responsibility for leading CPD and teacher development and aspirant senior leaders with an interest in this area.  It may well be the case that some of the literacy leads involved in the literacy programme may wish to continue onto this programme to further develop their expertise.

Book a place 

Train4Tomorrow: Digital and Technical Bootcamps

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Following a recent PESB meeting update, we are pleased to follow up with a great opportunity for your sector to connect local employers with highly-skilled talent from the government funded Train4Tomorrow Digital and Technical bootcamps.
Train4Tomorrow offers free, high quality, digital and technical training to adults in Devon, Plymouth, Somerset, Torbay, Cornwall and Dorset. The training is designed by industry employers to meet open and live vacancies.The programme helps local people advance their skills into growing sectors resilient to the current economic downturn. You can find out more about the programme at train4tomorrow.org.uk.
The first digital bootcamps are now concluding and we’re looking to connect local employers with the 750 highly skilled learners completing the bootcamps at a free-to-attend virtual digital jobs fair on April 20, from 9am to 4pm.
You can find out more about the jobs fair here: http://bit.ly/T4TJobsFairs 

Webinar : Meeting the Needs of Disadvantaged Pupils During and After the Pandemic

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Meeting the Needs of Disadvantaged Students

As schools continue to support pupils both in schools and remotely, as well as starting to fully re-open, Marc Rowland, a foremost expert on the effective use of the Pupil Premium and improving outcomes for disadvantaged learners, discussed via a recent webinar what schools can do to meet the needs of disadvantaged pupils.

About Marc Rowland

Marc is the adviser for improving outcomes for disadvantaged learners for the Unity Schools Partnership, a large cross-phase Multi Academy Trust based in the East of England.

Marc works with the Education Endowment Foundation’s national Research School Network on a range of programmes. He is also working on a range of long term programmes focussed on educational disadvantage nationally, including Essex, Wakefield, Enfield, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Sheffield, South Gloucestershire and Surrey LAs, and the Stoke on Trent Opportunity Area,

The slides and webinar recording are now available on the Portal here.





PFA Training - How we can support those who have experienced crisis

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As we prepare to welcome our children back into our schools many of us will be thinking about how they have been coping during lockdown. For some of our pupils this will have been a difficult time. Thank you for what so many of you have been doing to support those children through the regular contact, both academic and pastoral, during this extended period of remote learning. You may never be explicitly thanked for that support, although I hope you are, but you will have had a positive impact.


Simple empathic listening from a trusted adult is a huge, protective factor in the life of a young person going through a difficult period. We should all be confident that with a caring, thoughtful and empathic approach every contact we have with the children in our schools (and our colleagues, visitors and parents/carers etc.) can be a positive intervention.


For those of you interested in learning a little more about how we can support those who have experienced crisis Public Health England have made the Psychological First Aid training freely available. It takes between 1 and 2 hours to complete and is broken down into easy to digest chunks that explain the four phases of Prepare, Look, Listen and Link

  • ‘Prepare’ to deliver PFA – make sure you know the background and feel ready to act
  • ‘Look’ for signs of distress and assess the situation
  • ‘Listen’ to build understanding and empathy
  • ‘Link’ to further support (community activities and groups, physical activities, voluntary and statutory agencies and online resources)

Having completed the course this week I can recommend it as a useful aide memoir to concepts that are probably familiar to many of us. For any of you may have completed the Mental Health First Aid training this is complementary as it is directed towards helping those who have faced crisis, rather than recognising the signs and symptoms of common mental health issues.


If you don’t feel you have time to complete the PFA training can I encourage you to at the very least take less than 5 minutes to watch the following video, prepared by the Leicestershire Children’s Safeguarding Partnership, which reminds all of us how important it is to truly listen to what young people are telling us (via the spoken word and other forms of communication).

Some of the content may cause ‘afront’ at first but I would encourage you to be open and hear the ‘real content’. Please do connect with your local Designated Safeguarding Lead if the video prompts any concerns you may have for young people with whom you have been working, or speak to in the coming weeks.

Richard Woodland

Director of Inclusion, Westcountry Schools Trust