Staff at a Derby special school have been selected for a national role supporting schools in challenging circumstances and for training new teachers.
St Giles Special School, in Hampshire Road, which has been rated outstanding by Government inspectors, has been named as one of the UK’s newest National Support Schools.
It means that staff will go into struggling mainstream or special schools to share their expertise and will also take a lead role in the recruitment of new teachers.
The status means St Giles will receive an additional £60,000 funding next year to enable staff to work in schools needing additional support across the East Midlands and South Yorkshire.
Head teacher Clive Lawrence has been given the title National Leader of Education, which means he will provide additional leadership in the schools identified as needing help.
Mr Lawrence said: “We are really delighted to gain this national recognition and it’s all down to our diverse, ambitious and skilled staff who have such a lot to offer our students and now other schools can benefit too.
“We all come into education to see young people flourish and gaining this status means that our staff will be able to help even more students.
“This is a true reflection of the hard work and dedication of the whole school community including governors, staff, parents and pupils.
“We are passionate about raising educational standards for all children, especially for those with special educational needs and disabilities, and our staff are certainty well skilled to take on this exciting new role.”
St Giles will become a teaching school from September and is likely to work with schools with a high number of children with special educational needs, whether primary or secondary.
The type of support they will provide is flexible and will be tailored to the schools they will be working with, but St Giles must deliver 50 teacher training days a year for staff to share best practise.
Government funding for the school-to-school learning scheme is being used to recruit additional staff at the school which will enable the appointments of specialist leaders of education.
Mr Lawrence added: “St Giles has an exceptionally skilled workforce, and I want colleagues to both develop themselves further and to go out and experience working in other schools when providing support.
“A major benefit of becoming a teaching school is the opportunities it offers for staff development, which in turn benefits the quality of children’s learning.
“Our vision is that staff will move between levels and between schools, so they’ll have a much more open-ended career path. This will keep teachers in the profession, allowing us to develop leaders who can safeguard the profession and the quality of education in the future.”
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