Middle leadership

No Silver Bullets: Day-in, day-out school improvement

23 March 2021

School improvement is not about silver bullets. Rather it is about making small incremental gains day-in, day-out. A new book is offering 89 such gains to help focus the mind. Author Paul K Ainsworth dissects four of them here...




Appraisal: Can we talk about good professional dialogue?

13 January 2021

Schools within the Consilium Academies MAT are using professional development discussions to secure school improvement, boost teacher development and ensure that teachers have the opportunity to talk. Sean Harris finds out more


Professional development: How to receive fierce conversations

24 November 2020

Much has been written & discussed about delivering difficult conversations as a leader, but not as much has been said about how to receive them. Caroline Sherwood offers her reflections based around the seven principles of Susan Scott's Fierce Conversations


What school leaders can learn from Stoic philosophy

10 November 2020

From being values-driven and promoting mental fortitude to embracing uncertainty and being patient, primary headteacher Jim Mepham puts forward his case for how Stoic philosophy can transform the leadership of your school


Eight leadership habits and how to encourage them

4 November 2020

The Ted Wragg Trust prioritises leadership development across its schools. Senior leader Caroline Sherwood describes the MAT’s eight leadership habits and how these can be encouraged


Stepping up to co-headship

3 November 2020

Two heads are better than one as the saying goes. Sean Harris speaks to co-headteachers Alan Rogers and James Wilson about how a co-leadership approach to headship is working for them...


Four coaching conversations for school leaders

1 July 2020

Coaching can have a positive influence on staff wellbeing, morale and performance in schools. Denise Barrows outlines four particularly powerful coaching conversations that leaders can use to achieve this sort of transformative impact


Leadership during a crisis: Five crucial traits

14 April 2020

Previously, Jez Bennett explored how we can handle the coronavirus crisis using change-management theory and drawing on lessons from the Apollo 13 mission. He continues his discussion, looking at crucial leadership traits for crisis situations


Saving time: Collaboration

18 March 2020

Time is our most precious commodity and it is often in short supply. In this five-part series, Adam Riches looks at how we can change common practices to help save time and improve teaching and learning. Part three focuses on powerful collaboration


Good practice for professional coaching

25 February 2020

Drawing upon the literature and her experience as a professional coach, Helen Webb discusses the importance of effective contracting for in-school coaching programmes, including return on investment, goal-setting, confidentiality and demonstrating impact



Observing vulnerable students during lessons

22 January 2020

For teachers with challenging or vulnerable students in their lessons, observations can become all the more stressful. Daniel Sobel looks at how we must observe the pupils in question and not the teachers...



Chickens. candles and staff wellbeing

19 November 2019

If we cultivate freedom and innovation, teacher performance will soar – and this culture begins with middle leaders (as well as with chickens and candles). Peter Radford explains


Developing your middle leaders

24 September 2019

How can we best support our teachers who want to make the step-up to middle leadership? Adam Riches offers some ideas for school leaders to help them boost staff development





Are you a coach or a mentor?

20 March 2019

Would you make a good mentor or coach? With these approaches forming a core part of professional development and support in schools, John Dabell looks at what makes for effective practice


Getting work scrutiny right

6 March 2019

Book scrutiny (or sampling) is too often about criticism and too often conducted in a Big Brother atmosphere of distrust. Instead, it must be about improvement, development and sharing best practice. Adam Riches and Roy Watson Davis offer their advice


Becoming a middle leader

6 March 2019

Becoming a middle leader can be a daunting prospect, especially if you are still a relatively young teacher or new to the school. Dave Stephenson has recently made this step up and offers some basic advice


CPD workshop: Middle leadership – vision into practice

23 January 2019

Continuing his regular series, Steve Burnage talks us through CPD ideas that can be adapted. He offers a template for a 45-minute workshop with free handouts and slides on our website. This instalment looks at how new middle leaders can put their vision and ideas into practice


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