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

Luke Ramsden

What do DSLs need to be prepared for?

What challenges does the upcoming academic year hold for safeguarding leads? Luke Ramsden shares his reflections on the impact of KCSIE, Everyone’s Invited and Covid-19. With teachers around the country reaching their well-deserved summer breaks (ignoring for the moment the inevitable fallout of...
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Adele Bates

Checking in, self-direction and learning cycles: an alternative to school?

If you could design your dream school, what would it look like? Adele Bates finds out how Kate McAllister is making her dream a reality at The Hive School. When Optimus’ Liz suggested that I interview someone for the blog, I knew who my first choice was: Kate McAllister ( @Rethinking_Kate ) and her...
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Ian Holmes

Moving from health vs education to health and education

Ian Holmes and Bryn Llewellyn, co-directors of Move & Learn, explain the research and reality behind physically active learning and why it is especially important right now. There is plenty of evidence of the negative impact of COVID lockdowns on our children and their development. The problem...
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Aldaine Wynter

Developing an anti-racism strategy and preparing for a cultural shift

Aldaine Wynter describes the next part of his school’s anti-racism journey: creating a more relevant, inclusive curriculum, and promoting student ownership. My last blog, Beginning the conversation around race, diversity and inclusion with staff , shared my school's journey as we sought to...
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Olivia Dickinson

What is innocent socialisation and how can I challenge it?

Gender stereotyping starts from birth. Olivia Dickinson explains the effects of innocent socialisation and how to challenge assumptions in early years settings. When you welcome a child to your early years setting, whether it be a preschool, nursery or Reception class, how much do you think about...
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Adele Bates

How are we all behaving?

Are you seeing unusual behaviour patterns emerging post lockdown? Adele Bates reflects on what she and other practitioners are witnessing, possible causes and solutions. I’ve started and re-written this blog post a couple of times because it seems that every time I think I have found a pattern in...
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Ashmi Morjaria

What you don’t know, you don’t know!

Ashmi Morjaria explores the concept of hinterland knowledge, why it matters and what it means for curriculum design. As a member of the British Indian community and a school leader, I have found the last year more emotionally taxing than any year before. Knowing that I was 2 and half times more...
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Luke Ramsden

Navigating digital media: an essential part of the school curriculum?

Luke Ramsden makes the case for the explicit teaching of media and digital literacy to equip young people for a world of limitless information. If you look at the front page and mission statement of any school around the country you are likely to see that they boast that they are teaching for a ‘...
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Kelly Hannaghan

How to challenge the imposter within

Imposter syndrome can get in the way of fulfilling our potential and purpose. Kelly Hannaghan looks for ways to silence the bully and be ready for challenge and opportunity. Have you ever felt misplaced? ‘I got lucky’; ‘I don’t belong here’; ‘I’m a fraud, and it’s just a matter of time before...
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Aldaine Wynter

Beginning the conversation around race, diversity and inclusion with staff

Diversity and inclusion lead Aldaine Wynter shares how his school has embarked on an anti-racism journey. I am the Global Dwight Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator for our sites in London, New York, Shanghai, Seoul, Dubai, and for our online school. In addition to my global role, I am the Head...
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