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Peterborough teaching school goes to the top of the class

Teach East is a partnership of 29 schools located in and around Peterborough that provides school-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) to aspiring teachers.

Ofsted inspectors observed the teaching of 12 of the 29 trainee teachers in seven schools during the inspection in May. They also met with mentors, headteachers, course directors and members of the partnership executive group.

Teach East rated good in the four core areas: overall effectiveness, the outcomes for trainees, the quality of training across the partnership and the quality of leadership and management across the partnership.

Mike Sandeman, principal of Arthur Mellows Village College which is the lead school in the Teach East partnership, said: “The very positive findings of the Ofsted report is the culmination of a lot of hard work from everyone involved, be they a member of the co-directive, executive, mentor, trainer, trainee or administration.”

Councillor Lynne Ayres, cabinet member for education, said: “This is a fantastic achievement for all the schools and everyone involved in Teach East. The inspectors’ comments are a real testament to the work that is taking place in Peterborough to bolster the number of top quality teachers working in our schools by allowing people to train in the city, build a life here and then continue to work in our schools, teaching our children and young people.”

Inspectors highlighted successes in trainee attainment, stating “trainees are highly successful in gaining employment in local schools, which is making a strong contribution to the supply of effective teachers in the Peterborough area.”

The report added that outcomes for trainees across the partnership are good with all trainees who complete the course judged to be exceeding the teachers’ standards. One third of trainees were making outstanding progress.

The report also praised the working relationships between trainees and school pupils, stating “the development of trainees’ subject knowledge gives confidence to their teaching and earns the respect of pupils.” It also singled out the structure of the course, stating “well-designed second school placements effectively broaden the trainees’ experience of teaching in a range of contexts and socio-economic circumstances.” The report included that the leadership and management of the partnership is very effective, adding: “leaders have a very good overview of the programme and a track record of taking decisive and effective action to improve the programme.”

The 29 teachers completed their course last week. All of the trainees have achieved Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and have successfully gained employment for next year, the vast majority within Peterborough schools. This is the third year in a row that 100% of trainees have been appointed to a teaching post and reflects another successful year for Teach East and its trainees.

Co-Director of Teach East, Matt Norris, said: “The trainees have worked so hard this year and it is fantastic to see them rewarded with QTS and to know that Teach East is playing such a large part in helping improve education standards in Peterborough. With 29 of our teachers filling vacancies in the local area, it really does emphasise the importance of training locally to meet local needs, and we are delighted for each and every trainee.”