The Optimus blog

The blog that inspires leaders in the UK education sector

The Optimus blog

The blog that inspires leaders in the UK education sector

Sarah Hopp

What is the purpose of education?

Critical, creative and divergent thinking are often overlooked in favour of employability skills. Sarah Hopp suggests a different approach. The definition of education has been the subject of intense debate since the time of Aristotle and Plato. The word itself comes from the Latin ‘e(x)ducare’,...
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Lauren Peart-Roddis

The TEAM plan for workload and wellbeing

The TEAM Education Trust put wellbeing at the heart of its strategy from the start. Lauren Peart-Roddis shares useful tips and lessons learnt. Launching as a new education trust in the midst of a pandemic in June 2020 was always going to be tricky, but staff wellbeing was an important priority for...
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Liz Worthen

The best that we can be: why behaviour management starts with self-care

Liz Worthen speaks to Adele Bates about what inspired her book, “Miss, I don’t give a sh*t” , and what she’s learned in the process of becoming an author. Regular blogger Adele Bates has published her first book, “Miss, I don’t give a sh*t”: Engaging with Challenging Behaviour in Schools , in which...
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Fiona Carnie

Education in a changing climate

Responding to the climate emergency may seem too big to tackle but Fiona Carnie explains how schools can make a real difference. As the dust settles on COP26, businesses and organisations across the world are asking themselves what they need to do to reach net zero carbon emissions. For it is...
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Julia Sandford-Cooke

The 2021 Optimus blog quiz

In 2021, our blog covered everything from wellbeing, race and anxiety to school uniforms, finance and working with LSAs. Revisit your favourite posts to help you answer our quiz questions. Answers are at the bottom of the page. 1. Which of these tips is NOT helpful when tackling imposter syndrome?...
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Aldaine Wynter

Representation in school leadership: accountability, visibility, action

In the first in a new series of blog posts, Aldaine Wynter looks at the importance and impact of a diverse school leadership team. Representation is about having classroom teachers, middle and senior leaders as well as principals who reflect the diverse student body they serve. From early years...
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Olivia Dickinson

Like a girl: Gender stereotypes in education

What is the impact of gender stereotypes on the behaviours and beliefs of pupils and staff? Olivia Dickinson investigates. In your school or early years setting, what do you see that suggests how pupils and staff devalue things that are coded feminine? It is often deemed desirable for girls to like...
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Lucy Marcovitch

Five ways to teach RSHE with confidence

Guest blogger Lucy Marcovitch, writer, educator and series editor Discovery Education’s Health and Relationships programme shares her top five strategies for building confidence in teaching relationships, sex and health education. No matter how good a school’s RSHE provision might be, there is...
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Jean Gross

Self-efficacy: simple strategies to raise attainment

Building pupils’ sense of capability is vital to their long-term success. Jean Gross sets out some low-cost, straightforward ways to encourage self-efficacy in and out of school. I wonder if you use the idea of self-efficacy in your work? You may instead talk about having a sense of agency or an...
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Dr Karamat Iqbal

Preparing young people for a multicultural world

Where do you come from? Dr Karamat Iqbal explores what it means to live in a multicultural world and suggests resources to support teaching and further reflection. I have lived in the Midlands for 51 years, having been born in Kashmir. But I am used to being asked: ‘Where do you come from?' Visible...
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