At Nower Hill we are committed to ensuring all new colleagues feel welcome, are known personally and fully supported in the school. We hold an induction day for all new but experienced teaching staff in July, and an induction procedure for those who begin at other points during the academic year. Members of educational support staff have a dedicated induction and probationary period when they start their career with us.
We have a proud tradition of ‘growing our own’ which includes training both School Direct and PGCE trainees with the goal of appointing them to permanent positions. The school-based programme for NQTs includes, where possible, appointment as soon as their PGCE course is complete and a three-week intensive initial induction in July. This is followed by dedicated support and a comprehensive programme from both a faculty and whole school mentor throughout their induction year. The pedagogy of teachers in the second year of their career is further developed within a bespoke Y2TD (year 2 teacher development) programme.
To encourage the sharing and development of good practice, 15 minute whole-school training ‘Briefings’ take place each Wednesday at 8:30 am; regular faculty and student support meetings are held as part of the school's twilight cycle of meetings. Furthermore, all those who have been teaching for at least two years participate in our newly established cross-faculty Teaching Triads. This model which consists of two annual cycles of learning observations facilitates regular opportunities for peer-led coaching within a culture of trust and collaboration to inform and strengthen already high quality teaching and learning.
All heads of faculty are responsible for their own training budgets and use these to enable teachers to make best use of opportunities available. A central CPD budget is held by the AHT Development to meet any additional needs for all school support and teaching staff.
As part of our drive to ensure we are both a research-informed and research-engaged school, 6 pedagogy champions have been appointed for the 2017-2018 year to develop particular aspects of teaching and learning as well as to present and disseminate their action research to colleagues and governors. Areas of research focus in the last few years have included: effective questioning and feedback; pre-teaching; metacognition; use of SOLO taxonomy and Kagan structures; memory and mastery techniques; use of video to support self reflection and flipped learning.
Our CPD room within the virtual staffroom on Fronter contains a wealth of advice, information and support to enhance the 'live' training. Furthermore, we place great emphasis on the professional development of all staff and provide a very wide range of high quality in-house CPD programmes to complement our PAD (progress and development) process which includes a dedicated line manager for each colleague.
Teachers' line management meetings provide termly opportunities for discussion about pedagogy and career development. Members of educational support staff have their own performance management meetings.
We were awarded the gold standard pan London CPD quality mark in 2011 in recognition of our work. Moreover, Ofsted described the leadership of both Teaching and Learning and CPD as ‘exceptional’ in our 2012 inspection report and graded our leadership development as ‘outstanding’ in 2009. As a member of the Harrow Teaching School Alliance (HCTSA) all our staff have access to the full range of development opportunities it provides; details of all those offered in 2017-2018 can be found in the document below and via their website at: www.hctsa.org.