Saffron Teaching School Hub

Saffron Teaching School Hub brings together a range of partners across five Essex local authority districts to provide professional development, school-to-school support and deliver staff recruitment and retention. The region where it has Hub designation – Braintree, Chelmsford, Epping Forest, Harlow and Uttlesford – sees it supporting 256 primary, secondary and special schools. Saffron Teaching School Hub became a NASBTT member in mid-2021.

Angela Rodda, Assistant Headteacher at Saffron Walden County High School, Cambridge Teaching School Network (CTSN) SCITT Assistant Director and Saffron Teaching School Hub Teach First NPQ and ITT lead, has been involved in ITT since the beginning of her career and with NASBTT for many years in that capacity. Angela and Hub colleagues have already directly benefited from their Hub membership, as well as their ongoing SCITT membership.

Collaboration with NASBTT sees the charity’s associate subject consultants providing additional consultancy support to CTSN SCITT by auditing the SCITT’s own subject audits and training tables. “Whenever I have asked for support from NASBTT they have provided it,” Angela said. “I had to design an entirely new curriculum in the context of the Core Content Framework. NASBTT’s Curriculum Design and Assessment Toolkit was really useful at the start and then I attended an online event which provided a platform to hear what others are doing through breakout sessions. It really challenged our own thinking, and whether the depth of thinking is as it should be.”

Angela revealed that trainees in the CTSN SCITT have accessed a range of other NASBTT services. “We used NASBTT Learn during lockdown and for those trainees who are working from home, NASBTT Networks Live where trainees have all signed up for subject sessions and use the NASBTT Video Resource Bank all the time,” she said. “There is a really comprehensive, and growing, offer available for our trainees.”

Meanwhile, Saffron Teaching School Hub created an ITT network group in Essex, which helped them to audit, map and navigate the market and offer focused CPD for ITT leads. “This collaborative ITT group now works across the Saffron, Chafford Hundred and Alpha Teaching School Hubs,” Angela explained. “We have worked closely with NASBTT to identify bespoke provision for the area. This included a session where Emma Hollis (Executive Director) and James Coleman (Head of Operations and Training) presented to ITT providers alongside others in the sector. This enabled us to access a wider network beyond our immediate geography and the small group that we generally work within, and an opportunity to think differently. As a result of this workshop, we have been able to signpost ITT providers back to NASBTT training courses, including around instructional coaching, positioning the Hub as having the expertise to support other ITT leads.”

Angela’s Teaching School Hub colleagues have attended webinars designed specifically for Hubs, including one on Appropriate Body services. “The landscape for Hubs is ever changing but NASBTT is helping to shift and facilitate thinking with the support it provides,” she said. “NASBTT has a huge role to play in building connections between different aspects of a Hub’s remit, for example Appropriate Body and Early Career Framework and Early Career Framework and ITT. These have so much connection from a quality assurance perspective and ultimately making a difference to the early career teacher. NASBTT can also bring together, demonstrate and share good practice across cites, regions and the wider sector, drawing on what it already does really well.”

Angela is presenting at the NASBTT Annual Conference 2021 focusing on the way Teaching School Hubs can successfully collaborate on ITT with their regional partners.  “I am a firm advocate of what NASBTT is doing to support Teaching School Hubs, and would recommend NASBTT to any other Hub,” Angela added.

Case study developed: November 2021


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