I became a part of #TeamBarnwell in September 2016, with a responsibility for teaching History, along with a leadership role as 2nd in the Humanities faculty. Throughout my first year at Barnwell, there were several CPD opportunities available that enabled me to develop not only as a practitioner, but also as a leader within Barnwell school. This included a New Staff Induction programme, which I found was invaluable as a new teacher joining the school and led me to meeting a number of different staff across the school. Tailored CPD included Joint Practice Development (JPD) twilight sessions after school, which developed, and continues to develop my own practice. The GO (good to outstanding programme) enabled me to listen, debate and share ideas on what outstanding teaching practice looks like, as well as sharing resources across the school community. Lastly, I became part of our school coaching programme, which ultimately resulted in me fostering a different approach to my leadership style within my faculty and gave me the skills I needed for my future role.
Due to the number of CPD opportunities available to me when I joined Barnwell, I have developed my professional role further over the past two years, becoming Teaching and Learning Lead in September 2017 and then Assistant Headteacher for Teaching, Learning and Assessment in September 2018. Throughout this journey, I have felt extremely well supported by all staff across the school, and firmly believe that I would not have gained the experience or expertise needed for the role, if it were not for the school’s culture of promoting teaching and learning, as well as the excellent CPD opportunities that were made available to me. Becoming Assistant Headteacher has not reduced my desire for learning more about how I can develop as a practitioner, and I am currently part of a team running the Teacher Lead Development Programme (TLDW) within the school. Through this programme, I have adopted several new learning ideas and strategies from a wide range of teaching staff, who have different levels of experience in the teaching profession. A real testament the Barnwell ethos that learning and developing as a practitioner is constantly evolving, and everyone, at every level, can be responsible for this process.
Working at Barnwell over the last three years has been a wonderful experience, not only professionally, but also personally for me. I have never felt so well supported or valued in the positions I have held, something that I think is so important for moving people forward in their careers. There is a real emphasis that we should all be learning from each other to develop our teaching practice which has resulted in me really feeling like a member of #TeamBarnwell.
I am Harriet Field. I teach Physical Education and English at Barnwell School. I trained at The University of Chichester in P.E. and Sports Coaching; it was here that I secured my love of teaching. I teach so that I can make a difference to pupils’ lives and help them to see what they can achieve, all whilst having fun.
I chose Barnwell to complete my NQT year because they offered me the opportunity to teach two subjects. I felt this was important in my NQT year as it allows me to see the students in different environments. Another factor which swayed me to Barnwell was the two-campus system which allows growth and targeted learning. However, there is still a “Team Barnwell” feel across both campuses in students and staff.
Throughout my NQT year I was provided with excellent support, advice and guidance to see what kind of teacher I wanted to become. Whilst being at Barnwell I have found that I aspire to create inspiring, creative and engaging lessons which the students will remember. Barnwell’s goal is to educate the whole child and inspire pupils through the varying curriculum to achieve their best, this is something which I strongly support making Barnwell such a great place to work.
Since being at Barnwell I have been offered many opportunities to progress my own learning and teaching. I am currently enrolled on to the TLDW programme, which allows educators to research a specific topic which benefits their own teaching and the students. The TLDW is run by teachers within Barnwell so is specifically targeted at improving education within the school. I am hoping that this opportunity will lead me to complete my masters at Cambridge University, whilst still teaching.
I have been on a few of the many trips which Barnwell runs, Paris, PGL and Harry Potter Studios being a selection. These trips help support the students learning but more importantly also help us as teachers to create positive relationships with the students and helps support the “Team Barnwell” effect.
I feel this is why Barnwell is so special; they offer students opportunities that they wouldn’t get elsewhere. These opportunities help with both their education and building a trustworthy and safe learning space which helps them discover who they are and what they want to become.
I can’t see myself wanting to move from such a warm and inviting school anytime soon!
I chose Barnwell based on the career progression opportunities and the positive feedback received from staff. I had applied for a Geography Teacher position, however at interview, I was overwhelmed to have been offered the position of Head of Geography. Having newly settled into a career in teaching, this was a great opportunity which I couldn’t decline; it felt great knowing they believed in me. The opportunities continued; soon after accepting this role, I was offered the opportunity to do the National Professional Qualification for Middle Leadership (NPQML). I hadn’t even started my job and already I was inundated with opportunities – good vibes!
Working at Barnwell has been a continuous learning journey, as Head of Department, I’m constantly learning and growing. This has been helped with the support received from my work colleagues. It was evident within my first week of starting here, that #TeamBarnwell are a family. The communal staff room has been a great contributor in creating a positive working environment as well as events such as the Staff Conference, which embed the unity within #TeamBarnwell. Every day, everyone is friendly and always willing to help.
There are lots of opportunities to get involved with wider professional responsibilities, the Year 7 PGL trip being one of them. This is a residential trip helping Year 7’s transition into secondary school life, however, I felt this also helped me transition into Barnwell life by working with colleagues who I’d not liaised with prior to this trip. I’ve enjoyed getting involved, having recently moved into Middle Leadership at Barnwell, I feel I’ve made a positive contribution to the learning community. I feel valued and appreciated with the continuous positivity in weekly staff nominations and secret buddy gifts left anonymously in staff pigeon holes. These small kind gestures mean a lot when working in a career that is fast paced and often forgotten.
My future ambition at Barnwell is to join the Senior Leadership Team. In addition to leading a flawless department, I’d like to combine my love of travelling and teaching by running frequent field trips and offering trips abroad, deliver the Duke of Edinburgh Award and get Barnwell accredited status to deliver Youth Programmes.
My learning journey at Barnwell continues…
I’ve had an excellent first year at Barnwell. Making that transition from primary school into secondary school could have gone two ways and I’m so pleased it went the best possible route.
As soon as I showed an interest in coming to Barnwell to teach Science and PE, I’ve had first class support from everyone in the school and this has only made my move even more enjoyable than expected.
Throughout the year the opportunities for me to advance my learning and development has been first class. Not only have I had the chance to further my knowledge of Science on trips, I’ve had the chance to learn and deliver new sports (handball). One highlight for me this year was being given an opportunity to build on my pastoral skills by attending a resilience training course; the list goes on.
It was evident to me early on that I wanted to push myself further along the pastoral route, so I took as many opportunities to learn and develop during the year. So much so, that I applied to be a Head of College (maternity cover) for this year. Thankfully, through determination, listening to my peers and taking on their advice, I was successful; something I never thought I could achieve in my first year at the school.
This has now opened a plethora of further opportunities to learn and develop whilst experiencing another vital side of the job I never fully practiced in primary school. I’m so pleased to have joined such a supportive team, who cares about their staff. Barnwell is a community full of opportunities, who cares about their students and takes pride in what they do.
We are one of a kind and can offer so much to someone who wants to join – you just have to take that leap of faith to believe it.