The Aspirations Academies Trust has developed an approach and a model that enables long-term sustainable educational school improvement. Sustainable school improvement, particularly in England, is often a highly complex and difficult task and long term success is harder and more time consuming to achieve. Thus, this model cannot be simply taken off the shelf and applied easily to any school in need of improvement.
The Trust believes that school improvement needs to involve cultural, structural and systematic processes. The educational provision of a school needs to be built on strong foundations in order to provide an effective platform for teaching and learning. To achieve this, a school often needs to be culturally and systematically re-built before this can happen.
After a deep analysis of the whole school in order to identify the issues, the Aspirations Academies Trust formula for continuous school improvement is applied. The formula involved a clear focus on the development and, subsequently, the effective combination of five elements:
Achieving Outstanding Educational Practice through the Aspirations Academies Trust model for continuous sustained school improvement
The Aspirations Academies Trust is committed to raising students’ aspirations so that all young people reach their fullest potential and achieve the success they desire. As a result, the Aspirations Framework forms the centrepiece of our schools’ culture.
To complete our goal, each Aspirations Academy needs to achieve ‘Outstanding Practice’. This is done by having a very strong ‘Purpose’ driven by highly effective ‘Leadership’. When ‘purpose’ and ‘leadership’ are both highly focused and effective, then outstanding educational practice can be achieved.
From our experience in helping schools reach their ultimate potential, we discovered that achieving ‘Outstanding Practice’ is a process done in five:
Understanding the importance of the parallel drivers of purpose and leadership
Layering the Foundations
Constructing the platform for Teaching and Learning
Delivering effective Teaching and Learning
Using Innovation to create ‘Next’ practice
Truly outstanding schools never become complacent. They know they can get better and have developed a culture that is continually looking ‘outside’ both for guidance on what is needed, as well as for the ‘next’ practice.
Once the five stages have been implemented, it is important for schools to continuously monitor and review their systems and structures and keep looking to improve them to become even better.
You can find the full brochure on the Trust’s approach to school improvement here.