The penultimate and final week of the school year is always going to be an all encompassing and busy fortnight. The managerial focus requires school leaders to secure and deliver the celebratory events whilst also planning the summer works programme, results days and preparing for the new academic year. It is/was all to easy to get caught up in the process. This morning was about reviewing and reflecting on the After-Action-Review or AAR notes from the various events of the final fortnight of term.
Compared to summer 2017?
Summer 2018 was our busiest end of year to date, though possibly the best managed. Busiest because it included hosting an additional Regional Sports Day, launch of SIMs Parent App, accommodating a new national timetable and plans for a significant buildings programme, decommissioning rooms and relocating classrooms. It also included a “pop-up classroom project” which, although not completed at the time of writing, this has been a brilliant concept project, led by our Sixth Form students and overseen by our Assistant Headteacher. It will add an outdoor learning, hosting and performance space, that I expect will see a lot of use in Sept, Oct, May through to July.
Best managed as “we” were a consistent leadership team, benefiting from last years after-action-reviews (AARs) following the various events. (This years AARs will inform summer 2019). Second, I had scheduled two extended blocks of time to be “unavailable,” time allocated to “2018 Planning” in my diary, to attend to “unforeseen” tasks. These, as it turned out, were essential. Third, I have benefited greatly from showing more trust in our senior colleagues, to lead and deliver within their roles. Growing capacity, narrowing my focus and sharing and defining responsibility.
Of course, the final fortnight is punctuated with highlights. The Regional Sports Day was immense and I felt Hindhead Campus gave a good account of ourselves as hosts. The student fund raiser – “Festival on the field,” had a wonderful summer vibe and our students showcased their entrepreneurial and creative talent. This event presents itself as an opportunity to develop? Especially as we will have an performance space too. It is really great to see the whole school and school community, come together to enjoy one another’s company.
The staff Italian themed meal was delightful. A wonderful setting, beautiful decorated. Fantastic food, colourful drinks, great service; it is a privilege to be able to spend an afternoon with colleagues in this way. A fantastic OneSchool tradition.
The main celebration event owes much to the organisation of our Bryony Atkinson. The introduction of an Campus-Community Events Team this year certainly improved communication and delivery of the large events.
Lastly, watching the 2017-18 Academic Year review video and writing the various formal addresses, the final school assembly poem, (to students), closing address at our Celebration Event (to students, parents and community) and letter to staff, encourages you to pause and reflect.
This year I re-read all the Kudos nominations that I have submitted via my weekly reports and staff stars that anyone associated with our school can contribute. I will be sure to do that again next year. With an acknowledgement to Tamra Bradbury, I will be sure not to miss a Kudos nomination opportunity in 2018-19.
Perhaps the contribution that has had the most impact on me professionally, is that of Kenneth Breame. I have missed, and will miss, his calmness and sensibilities. Kenneth, thank you for your trust, your outlook on the challenges life has thrown at you, has been quite humbling. Your determination has left a deep mark on me.
Hindhead Campus should be proud of its achievements this year. There have been many events, activities, successes and performances, all detailed in the excellent newsletters, and all of which have enriched the students’ experience of school and provided opportunities for them to develop the values, knowledge, attributes and skills to help them become ‘life-ready’ young people. These experiences owe much to the work of the dedicated staff, the leadership of Mr Still and the senior team, and the support of the CA Team and Trustees.
Forethought for Summer 2019
It is important the AAR points are taken forward, together with the reflections that arise from writing this post.
Our intended results and our actual results were more closely aligned this time around.
What brought about or led to our results? “We” were a consistent leadership team. We benefited from last years after-action-reviews (AARs) and being able to state changes were in response to feedback. Returning to venues. Minimising changes. Expecting obstacles and scheduling blocks of time to be “unavailable,” Showing more trust in our senior colleagues. The introduction of the Events Team.
What will we sustain?Request to bring forward Sports Day events and Trustee Board meetings. Continue to work with an Events Team, maintain the smaller teams and roles within those teams. Return to the venues, keep to the event schedules.
What might we look to improve? Develop the “Festival on the Field.”
The actions or responses to the AAR have been set up as delayed emails, to be delivered prior to the appropriate meetings in September.