Following the visit by the Secretary of State, Damien Hinds, to Archway Learning Trust in March it was a huge honour to be invited to attend a reception celebrating the best in teaching at Number 10 Downing Street. The Prime Minister hosted this event and it was encouraging to hear how passionate she was about the importance of teachers: “Teachers are key to making Britain the great meritocracy it can and should be, and I am committed to working with them so that every child has the best possible start in life.”
The belief that every staff member who works in schools can and does make a daily difference to the lives of young people is something that can never be repeated too many times. As SATs take place in Primary Schools, teachers and students are frantically preparing for GCSE and A level exams, it is vital to recognise and reiterate again how critical good quality teaching really is.
I was at a conference recently where John Dunford spoke about the difference great teaching makes to disadvantaged children in particular. Whereas a more advantaged child can weather the storm of less good teaching, for a disadvantaged child it can leave them up to 10 months behind their peers in terms of progress. Whatever the government in power and whatever new initiatives that come our way, surely giving all students the very best start in life we can has to be our key purpose and goal. Great staff teams and great students are essential ingredients for this and we are incredibly fortunate to have both at Archway Learning Trust.