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25 May 2022 |
Ten Years of Staff Development

Ten Years of Staff Development

Only months after the foundation of The White Horse Federation, the Swindon Teaching School was launched. Ever since then, this level of commitment into developing excellent teaching staff has been a consistent factor at our trust.

As a result of this effort, an exceptionally high proportion of our school principals have developed from within the organisation.

But staff development doesn’t only take place among a school’s senior leadership team. At every level, staff development and opportunity is just as important.

We asked staff to tell us their stories at the federation, and share some of their favourite moments.

Having started out as an HR Admin Assistant, Jayne Campbell is now an HR Lead in Learning and Development, helping her colleagues benefit from the wide range of development opportunities that she has herself benefitted from during her time at the trust. “The trust has supported me doing my level 3 CIPD apprenticeship. I’m currently working on my level 5, and have had two promotions in the meantime!”

Our apprenticeship programme offers funded training for staff of any age, wherever they’re looking to develop their career in education. If you’d like to know more about the opportunities TWHF apprenticeships can provide, watch our crowdcast from February: Apprenticeships: Dispelling Myths.

Anna Willcox joined the trust as Forest and Sandridge became a member school in 2018. School transfers can be difficult, political affairs, but Mrs Willcox remembers the time fondly: “never in my career have I received such a high level of care and support from leaders.”

Since then, Anna has gone on to work as interim principal at other schools in the trust, before securing secondment, and now a permanent post as consultant principal. “The support continues to be second to none. I would not want to work for any other trust!”

Over the past decade, we’ve also been able to to take part in some amazing staff initiatives, including the Around the World Challenge last year, and the TWHF Cycle Challenge in 2017, in which staff cycled between all the schools in the trust at the time, raising money for Shamrock school in Nepal.

Lee Edmonds, who had progressed from a KS2 Lead to now Principal at Mountford Manor Primary School, remembers this event particularly fondly, as one of his favourite memories at the trust!

Another aspect we love to see happening is collaboration between our different schools. Asked about his favourite memories at the trust so far, Class Teacher and Year Group Phase Leader Glenn Sedgwick “It has been wonderful to see friendships formed between children from Moredon, Croft, Rodbourne Cheney, Mountford Manor and Nylands during numerous trips in the past few years.”

“Now that we are emerging from Covid-restrictions, it will be great to see these kinds of events resume.” We definitely agree, Glenn!

Great things happen at every level in The White Horse Federation. One of the more touching responses we had from a member of staff was from TA Julia-Ann Gadd:

“I was a 1:1 TA to a child with Down’s syndrome and hearing loss for over four years. The achievements we made together gave me such job satisfaction. Also, when he went off to special school at the start of year 2, I felt a huge sense of achievement, that I and my work colleagues had done everything to prepare him for his future at his new school.”

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