Universally Unacclaimed: The Great VAT DebateĀ 

April 7, 2017


The other night I tweeted out the following story, assuming that it would be a slam dunk with the twitterati, or at least the vast majority of them.  I mean, seriously, who on my timeline was going to dislike the idea of applying VAT to private education fees (I hadn’t even realised that they were […]

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Community Heartbeat

March 25, 2017


Upon becoming Headteacher at Canons two and a half years ago, I set out to bring together the disparate views of various people involved in the work of  our school into a medium-term vision for the road ahead. I won’t go into too many of the details here, but it involved conversations with governors, staff, […]

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Football Manager Syndrome: FFS! or DSS?

March 11, 2017


Perhaps one of the most pervasive myths around school leadership at the moment is what school leaders like to call Football Manager Syndrome (FMS for the remainder of this post). I wasn’t at the ASCL conference but I’m guessing that the words rang out on numerous occasions over the duration of the weekend.  The myth, […]

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Surgeon General’s Warning: Wielding a Smoking Gun is Bad for Education

March 4, 2017


This is going to be ranty blogpost. You have been warned!! This week I read (and largely welcomed the findings of) the Social Mobility Commission’s report into ‘Low income pupils’ progress at secondary school’ (link here). As a Headteacher of a school in an area that serves a large number of students from low income […]

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Why I (largely) left teaching behind

February 19, 2017


This morning I found this tweet waiting for me.  The first thing I thought was “how on earth am I going to get a response to this into 140 characters?” Having pondered it a little more I had resigned myself to the fact that it would probably be a series of tweets, each one with […]

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Seven Key Questions for the Chartered College of TeachingĀ 

February 17, 2017


Preamble I was fortunate enough to wangle a place at the launch of the Chartered College of Teaching inaugural conference today (16 Feb 2017) in spite of not yet being a member. And I mean that “yet”. I’m a big fan of the idea of a professional body or, in the more earnest jargon, learned […]

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Rearview Mirror wb 6 February 2017

February 14, 2017


Last week I had a go at capturing some of the events in a ‘week in the life of a Headteacher’. You can view it here. I thought I’d see how it worked for me and for others before deciding whether or not to write another.  Having received some lovely feedback from those in the […]

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Rearview Mirror wb 30 Jan 2017

February 3, 2017


It’s been a while since I’ve blogged. The job of a Headteacher doesn’t half get in the way. And so, in the spirit of turning weaknesses into strengths, I thought I’d see if a weekly post about ‘a week in the life’ works to scratch the itch.  After another full on week, I’m also wondering […]

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A Murmuration of Boids: It’s Complex (1)

November 27, 2016


I’ve always had a fascination for murmurations.  Even though the English teacher in me loves the collective noun, it’s the visuals that do it for me.  The semi-simultaneous arcing and wheeling that is reminiscent of a shoal of fish.  The “now you see me, now you don’t” as the group moves from showing us a […]

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Ain’t no fun (for anyone) in being a sh1t funnel

August 27, 2016


I can’t quite remember the first time I heard the phrases “sh1t umbrella” and “sh1t funnel” but I’ll never forget the distinction between these two fabulous metaphors and the absolute necessity that school leaders work their hardest to always be the former and never be the latter.  It’s hard because, as I’ve found in the […]

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