Friendly advice 4 SLT within an SEN school:

Okay so there is mandatory information to get across….. health & safety, Ofsted, data collection etc. But how many educationalist (teachers, TA’s, leadership) have been sat in a meeting where the aim is unclear and it’s been questionable if the meeting was for the development of the school.

As an educationalist who has been on both sides of the divide (Teacher and Leadership) during a meeting always embrace your audience- often the best ideas will come from those working directly with the pupils day in day out. Let me be clear this is not a low blow at senior leaders in school but just an acknowledgement of the reality- teachers and TA’s will have first hand experience of what works and what doesn’t. So my message to the senior leaders reading this is why not tap into this knowledge bank at you disposal? This will also help to empower the teachers by giving them ownership of the meetings. From a teachers perspective it would be important in areas such as classroom, staffing, appropriateness of SEN provision, placement of pupils within classes and teaching of topics/themes.

Using one of these examples, staffing, teachers are well set to know which staff would work best with which pupils. Why not let them distribute the staffing in conjunction with Senior leaders so that groups are balanced by their staff. Also teachers might be more aware of team dynamics and which staff work well together.

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