At Bishopton PRU we believe in the power of continuous professional development and feel that in order to support children and young people staff must continue to learn and grow. We offer our staff a range of training opportunities and also offer opportunities to colleagues from other settings to learn from us.
Staff at Bishopton have the opportunity to develop through a range of courses and external providers. Examples of this is staff completing courses such as, NPQLT.
“The Headteachers recognise that for the young people to be happy and succeed, the staff need to be happy and well-supported. There are progression routes and opportunities for all staff. A restructure last academic year has led to staff being able to expand their whole-school responsibility areas.” IQM Report 2021
peer review work
At Bishopton we believe in the power of peer to peer support and welcome colleagues from different settings visiting our school to learn about the work we do and share good practice. Please get in touch if you would like to arrange a visit to find out more.
Feedback from some recent visits:
“Bishopton is clearly a special place with transforming the lives of all students at its heart. There was an incredible warmth in the school, happiness radiated from both students and staff and it really was delightful to experience. Calm classrooms, purposeful learning environments, engaged students, clear corridors, bespoke support and clarity of purpose were evident no matter where I went or who I spoke to. I don’t underestimate the hard work, long journey, resilience, determination and commitment this requires.”
“Myself and my Leadership Team visited Bishopton to gain an insight into how they work with vulnerable children. At an extremely busy time, Emily and the team made themselves available to brief us on numerous different aspects of the work they do. The knowledgeable staff provided a real insight into the workings of the school, identifying their flexible approaches to meeting the needs of the pupils in their care. Walking around the school, it was evident that staff really understood their pupils, knowing what makes them ‘tick’ and exactly what their needs are, not just from an academic viewpoint, but from the holistic view of seeing the whole child and everything that they may be carrying.”
Bishopton staff training others
Staff at Bishopton have delivered CPD to a number of other settings on a wide range of topics. Staff have also presented at National Conferences, sharing good work and practice.
In October Mrs Cooling and Mrs Watson presented at Women Ed Global Unconference. They discussed how, after completing the Women Ed “Inspiring women into leadership” course, they became 10% braver and are now pursuing different leadership roles within school.
Mrs Cooling also presented for the Women Ed book club in October. Discussing the key messages from Reshma Saujani’s book ‘Brave, not perfect’.
Emily Carr has contributed a chapter to a book called ‘Cultures of Staff Wellbeing and Mental Health in Schools’.
Emily Carr and Rachel Campbell presented at the schools North East curriculum conference in April 2021.
Mrs Campbell speaking for Schools North East, at the Supporting Challenging Learners conference 2019.
- “Your staff were brilliant! Everything they said was relevant, there was a mixture of learning strategies, (talking, video and interactive) which kept the group learning all the time and it was so clear how the staff had an extremely high level of expertise. Thank you so much for giving us their time and knowledge today. The students would really like the opportunity to visit your school at some point during the year.”
- “I was observing a student this morning and she commented on how useful the training at Bishopton was. She said it made her look at the children in her class in a different light. The students here also commented how they enjoyed listening to the different anecdotes staff had to offer and their journey to where they are today. Students also expressed an interest in visiting the Bishopton Centre”
- “Morning Emily, Just to say a huge thank you for the training your staff delivered for the teaching alliance. It has certainly gone down extremely well with all concerned so much much appreciated thanks.
Specialist Leaders in Education
Two Senior Leaders at Bishopton are Specialist Leaders of Education (SLEs), through Campus Stockton Teaching Alliance.
SLEs are specialist in their field, and know what outstanding teaching and leadership ‘looks’ like. They have a great understanding of education and proven success in their setting for supporting colleagues to progress in their own knowledge and experience. SLEs are available for outreach work in both Primary and Secondary schools, and do so through support and nurture. They believe in a democratic leadership approach, taking an active role in the decision making process whilst supporting others.
Emily has been Headteacher of Bishopton PRU since September 2017, and before that she has worked as a leader in a number of other PRUs across the North East. Emily has had a number of leadership roles before becoming Headteacher – Deputy Head; Assistant Head; Director of Curriculum and Learning. She has also worked as a school lead for Eco Schools; Healthy Schools and has been a subject leader of ICT, Science, English and SEAL. Emily successfully competed the NPQSL course, with her final piece of work being on how she implemented ‘Life without levels’ and the new National Curriculum in a PRU setting. Before entering the world of PRUs, Emily worked as a primary teacher, in particular as a year 6 teacher. Through working as a year 6 teacher, she developed a range of strategies to ensure children made strong progress and achieved and exceeded their targets. Emily’s experience at both primary and secondary, has given her an insight in what is successful at all key stages and a strong understanding of transition between key stages. She is keen to share this experience. Due to her experience of working with disengaged and disaffected learners, and since becoming Headteacher at Bishopton, she has worked hard to look at ways to support children to develop academically, socially and emotionally, through developing a therapeutic intervention system as well as a curriculum which has been designed to engage vulnerable learners. Emily is forward thinking and outward facing and is keen to support schools in developing at a strategic level, using current research and through building networks at a local and national level. She has set up a local network of PRU leaders, which has now also branched out to include some PRU subject networks. Skilled in strategic planning, coaching, Classroom and behaviour Management, and developing systems, procedures, policies and strong teaching and learning. Passionate about people and big on relationships. Emily believes that relationships are key and works hard to develop strong relationships with pupils and parents, as well as agencies and other partners who can support in achieving the best outcomes for the children.
Rachel Campbell is one of our Co-headteachers at Bishopton. Rachel has worked across a range of secondary schools and alternative provisions, at different levels before joining Bishopton Pupil Referral Unit in 2015. She has previously held middle leadership positions in English, before becoming a senior leader in the PRU. She has an outstanding track record for her own teaching, and has supported others in developing their teaching practice through the development of Co-Operative Teaching Groups and rigorous performance management. Her knowledge and experience includes developing the curriculum for challenging learners, and personal development, behaviour and welfare. Her passion for education has led her to deliver whole school CPD as well as presenting at a regional Schools North East conference. She strongly believes in an education system whereby all pupils, regardless of background circumstances, can have the opportunity to achieve.
In October 2019, Bishopton held its first conference which was filled to capacity. We had a market place of supply agencies and other services available to schools. We also welcomed Key Note speakers Ann Muxworthy to talk about the National picture on curriculum and the implications for SEMH provision and Helen Woodley who talked about school culture and staff well-being. In the afternoon there were a number of workshops delivered by members of staff at the Bishopton on a range of key areas like SMSC, EHCP planning, childhood trauma and mental well-being, reading across the curriculum and developing a curriculum for the disengaged.
Feedback from the conference was extremely positive:
“Thank you for a very well organised day. The workshops/guest speakers were informative and gave me a chance to reflect. This was a valuable day; I would happily attend future training”
“Brilliant informative event. Would love to see the same structured day aimed at pastoral staff and empowering them to ask their SLT for time and trust to deliver strategies”
“Great event, lots to take away and think about. Great start with breakfast and good outside speakers”
“I gained a good knowledge on all the events held. However I specifically would like to draw attention to the trauma session delivered by Laura and Kate. Their knowledge and ideas were relatable to me. It was great to also get knowledge of the schools behaviour policy and reward system”
“Enjoyed the setup of the day. Very different to usual CPD!!”
Bishopton Educating Others
Events coming soon.