Skip to content ↓

Peterborough Primary Headteachers' Day 06.06.24

By Stuart Mansell, CEO, OWN Trust

OWN Trust continues to facilitate the Peterborough Primary Headteacher (PPH) meetings and Thursday the 6th June saw the final PPH Day of this academic year. With a reviewed structure, the event at the Allia Future Business Centre was packed with a mixture of Headteachers from Primary, Special Education, and Nursery schools, as well as Local Authority representatives and Service Directors. Executive Director of Children and Young People’s Service, John Gregg, committed to regular attendance at the termly meetings and delivered the first part of the morning.

Updates regarding the change in council leadership and the development of the Children’s Improvement Board, looking at the Leaving Care Service, relocation of the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub and Health, led into updates about key personnel changes for Service Directors and the new approach to Education Safeguarding for Peterborough.

Education Safeguarding has always been overseen jointly by Peterborough and Cambridgeshire, but there is now a plan to separate the two authorities in this respect to offer a more individualised service to the City. Sue Proffitt (Education Safeguarding Lead) outlined the proposals, including more Peterborough-centred training and networks as well as on-site safeguarding reviews – exciting developments!

School Improvement, led by Nick Beech, offered access to both Early Career Teacher events and opportunities to develop writing in Key Stage 2, before Isabel Clark and Libby Walker updated everyone on new changes to attendance legislation.

The second half of the morning was led by Bradley Busch from Innerdrive, who delivered a fantastic keynote presentation on ‘Developing Resilient Environments’. Sourced by OWN Trust, Bradley was engaging and highly informative about how we can work to both support and challenge children to get them to achieve their very best.

Following lunch and an opportunity to network with so many school-leader colleagues, the focus shifted to supporting vulnerable children and families through both the Early Help Assessment process (Rebecca Gibson) and the long term strategy for Special Educational Needs & Disabilities (SEND). This area of provision is proving to be a mountainous challenge for Local Authorities and schools across the entire country, whether due to increases in the numbers of children with needs, the severity of those needs, the lack of agencies to support them effectively, and the ever-increasing demand for sufficient funding and resourcing. Recently appointed James Bird (Head of SEND & Inclusion), worked with Katie Barnett (Head of Statutory Assessment and Monitoring) to facilitate this workshop and was honest and open about the difficulties that all settings are facing.

As this was the last meeting of the year, it was also an opportunity to thank those school leaders who are moving on at the end of the academic year, whether to other roles or retirement. On a personal note, it was also my last meeting, having been the lead partner in the organisation of Peterborough Primary Headteachers' Days for the past 6 years. However, OWN Trust will continue to facilitate and support opportunities for collaborative working within Peterborough, as this is seen as a vital part of supporting and improving the outcomes for the children of Peterborough.