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

Professional development

Elizabeth Holmes

The early career framework – so far so good?

As we draw towards the end of its first year of implementation, Elizabeth Holmes reviews how the early career framework has been received and experienced. Can it provide a positive, sustainable base to a teaching career? In a shake up of the induction period for newly qualified teachers, the early...
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Aldaine Wynter

Racial literacy and what it means for me

What is racial literacy and why should it be incorporated into the school curriculum? Aldaine Wynter shares his experiences. In my first blog post, ‘ Beginning the conversation round race, diversity and inclusion with staff ’, I briefly spoke about racial literacy and its place in anti-racist CPD...
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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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Nicky Thompson

Attracting and retaining career changers

Career changers can bring a wealth of skills and experience to the teaching profession. Nicky Thompson explains how schools can support and encourage new teachers from another sector. Seven years ago I swapped the boardroom for the classroom when I retrained to be a technology teacher in a...
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Catherine O'Farrell

Power in collaboration: Four tips for high-impact LSAs

Learning support assistants (LSAs) provide valuable support to pupils with complex needs but their continuing professional development (CPD) is often overlooked. Catherine O’Farrell explains how teachers and other professionals can work with them to develop the skills they need. One of the most...
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Aldaine Wynter

Setting up an anti-racist book and film club

Aldaine Wynter explains how book and film clubs form an essential strand of staff professional development around anti-racism in his school. In my previous blog, Developing anti-racism strategy for schools and preparing for a cultural shift , I explored the impact that anti-racism strategies have...
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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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Andrew Hammond

Critical reflection at the heart of CPD

Guest blogger Andrew Hammond explains why personal development, motivation and empowerment need to be at the centre of any CPD programme. The craft of teaching requires heart and mind, body and soul. CPD is often targeted at boosting our professional skills without considering the deep-down-things...
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Catherine O'Farrell

From fear to opportunity and growth: levering the power of the collective

Catherine O’Farrell explains how a need for Covid-19 solutions has given rise to an international community of practice around inclusion. Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay So, we all know the narrative that has been espoused again and again over the past months. It’s flooding our televisions,...
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