Academic Director of the Prince's Teaching Institute
During the course of the year, the Headmaster contributed a number of days as Academic Director of the Prince’s Teaching Institute, a national educational charity, aimed at giving state school teachers access to the highest quality professional development. This year, the PTI has run several one-day CPD courses focusing on bringing state school teachers together to hear the latest research in their subjects from university lecturers. As course-designer for the residential programmes, the Headmaster has also designed and overseen residential professional development courses for hundreds of state school Heads of Department across ten different subject areas. In addition, with funding from the DfE, the PTI also runs subject enrichment courses for NQTs.
Their aims are to:
- Enhance subject knowledge,
- Share best practice,
- Promote the role of the teacher,
- Engage students in subjects.
In 2001, His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales initiated a series of discussions between various people interested in education, whether as teachers, employers, or policymakers. With support from all those consulted - including the DfES, Chief Education Officers, Business in the Community, and a range of schools, the idea of an annual Summer School for teachers of English and History took shape. The underlying aims were to generate discussion about the specific contribution to education made by English Literature and History and about what constitutes an education in these subjects. A pilot Summer School was held at Dartington Hall, Devon. Eighty teachers of English and History from state schools in the South West attended, together with a galaxy of distinguished guest speakers. The Prince of Wales made the opening address. Discussions centred on the questions of why we should teach English and History, and what contribution these subjects should make to pupils’ cultural, moral, political and social values. There was considerable press interest, although not all of it was focused on the important educational issues being explored.
Since then, the institute has grown from an annual summer school pilot reaching 60 teachers, to a national charity holding regular courses and an annual conference and has now reached 5,076 teachers.
In the course of a year, the PTI’s work reaches hundreds of state school teachers and through them thousands of state school pupils. The evidence of the evaluation of each course shows that the PTI’s work has a deep and sustained impact on improving standards and opportunities across its state school partners by giving the resources, opportunity and encouragement to teachers to develop their passion for their subject and for communicating it to their pupils. The Headmaster is a founding member of the charity and has worked for it since its inception.