East Kent Schools Together

Partner: Spires Academy, Folkestone Academy, St.Anselm's, St.Lawrence College, St.Edmunds Canterbury, Canterbury Christ Church University, The King's School Canterbury
Partner type: Community Group
Project category: Academic

East Kent presents a diversity of economic, social and educational backgrounds for schoolchildren. When pupils and staff collaborate across schools, by sharing resources and exchanging experiences, there can be huge mutual benefits, especially for disadvantaged children. East Kent Schools Together is an innovative independent-state school partnership,in which each school contributes and draws from the partnership on an equal footing for the benefit of all. The inclusion of a university as a partner opens exciting and innovative educational opportunities for the schools involved.

Aims of the project

  1. Raising aspirations: Pupils' achievements and prospects are improved when schools collaborate. We are looking to enrich teaching and learning by forging strong relationships and sharing professional practice amongst colleagues.

  2. Widening horizons: Pupils have a broader experience by collaborating with children from different backgrounds and experiencing an enriched education beyond the curriculum. The partnership aims to help children become resilient learners, feeling confident relating to a wide spectrum of people in a variety of situations.

Background and goals

We have a busy programme of activities in place with two main objectives:

  1. Enriching teacher professional development in order to strengthen teaching and learning in all our schools.
    Examples include: TeachMeets and cluster group meetings to share good practice and widen networks, two-way placement swaps for trainee teachers, shared professional development

  2. Developing, pupil confidence and well-being by bringing children together for shared experiences; cultural, sporting, academic and volunteering.
    Examples include: training for leadership together to work in the community, older pupils leading younger pupils in debating, running partnership magazines, collaborating for sporting events, raising money for charity

Many of these initiatives are supported by our partner, Canterbury Christchurch University.

Resources

Each school contributes to a shared programme of partnership events: enrichment activities for pupils, joint professional development for teachers, academic courses, shared sports or meeting facilities. Some projects are open to the wider community.

Impact

All partnership activities are being evaluated so that the benefit to pupils and teachers and the value for money can be assessed. Impact factors in education can be hard to measure, especially when long-term outcomes include increased confidence and changes in attitude.However, with the support of our university partner and other experts a meaningful programme has been devised.

Pupil involvement

All pupils from each of the schools are encouraged to become involved in the activities of the partnership.

Frequency and duration

A whole programme of events and activities hosted by each of the schools over the school year.