- We have found the principles under-lying the project to be sound and our involvement has led to better PP interventions, best practice relationships with a number of schools, has prompted the overhaul of our entire data and reporting system and has got us carefully considering the future of setting within our school, and the project has seen a couple of middle leaders really step up as potential senior leaders within the school. Louise Mallett has been brilliant as a coach.
RADY coaching, January - July '17Neil JonesDeputy Headteacher, Turves Green Girls School
- We are an early voluntary converter academy. We converted to maintain control over our own destiny. We worried that we were becoming too insular and lacked a source of external expertise, but we wanted to set the agenda and ensure that the help we got made us better at achieving our aims. We wanted to improve the effectiveness of our Headteacher performance management. Louise Mallett from Challenging Education became our external adviser. She carried out an independent assessment of our school data, therefore she had background information and came prepared. However, she did not come pre-determined ideas, instead she spoke to the governor panel so that she could understand the issues we felt should direct the PM process. We found her very approachable and she guided and supported us in formulating a much more useful and effective HTPM. She made sure that our ideas became better focussed and produced a HTPM document that accurately recorded the decisions that we made. All her work was completed in a timely and professional manner.
HTPM, January 2017Ian WiseChair of Governors, The Weston Road Academy
- I just want to thank both you and Simon for the day. It was exactly what we asked for – challenge whilst also supportive and providing coaching where appropriate. I really appreciate the extra information and have already started putting some of it to good use to move us forward even more!
Collaborative Review of Leadership, Oct 16Jonathan WilliamsHeadteacher, Moorgate Primary Academy
- Hi Trevor, Thank you for the draft report we have shared it with the Chair of Governors today and feel that it is an accurate and productive report which supports our self evaluation. We found the collaborative review very useful, providing a snap shot of school today and identifying our next steps. The day was very thorough, challenging yet immensely constructive.
Collaborative Review of Leadership, June '17Rachael McKinneyCo-headteacher, St Saviour's Birmingham
- Thank you for sending the draft so quickly. Thank you for your time with us. It was really valuable and appreciated by everyone. It was a pleasure working with you and Louise.
Collaborative Review of Leadership, Feb '17Moira Foster-BrownHeadteacher, Birchfield Community School
- Just a quick message to say thank you for last night. A really useful session for Governors and senior leaders and you presented what is a challenging paper in a very light hearted and informative way. Our governors are certainly better informed of the Raise and Inspection Dashboard and said how useful it was last night.
Bespoke governor training, 24th January 2017Stephen DrewDeputy Headteacher, Springcroft Primary
- Following our successful use of Challenging Education for HTPM we approached them for external professional guidance for our recruitment process to replace our Headteacher who had retired. We meet with Simon Blackburn to discuss how he could help us recruit a suitable new Head. We found him to be very easy to work with. He found out the qualities we were looking for, he offered various selection exercises which would allow us to test the candidates. He wanted to understand what we wanted and then tried to offer us the best ways of achieving them. He was present for the whole of the two day process. He gave calm, clear guidance to the governors. He helped us to be confident that we were getting the correct information from the activities we were observing. He enabled us to score the activities in an objective and logical manner. Governors were encouraged to offer opinions, observations and ask questions in the post activity discussions. He did not try and dominate or take control of the process but his steady and calm presence allowed me, as Chair, to manage the two days successfully. Recruitment of a new Headteacher is probably the most important thing that a governing body does. With Simon's help our recruitment of a new Head was enjoyable, rigorous and above all successful.
Headteacher recruitment, January 2017Ian WiseChair of Governors, The Weston Road Academy
- Hi David, Thankyou for the very prompt return of our report. The review was extremely useful and we now feel focussed as to what we have to do next. We are all very appreciative of the supportive approach you have taken and the time you spent talking to us.
Collaborative Review of Leadership, June '17Gill SimmHeadteacher, Bellfield Infants, Birmingham
- Good morning Louise, It was good to work with you on Wednesday. Thank you for the positive way in which you conducted the review, we really appreciated the conversations and guidance you gave.
Pupil Premium Review, June '17Kalsom KhanHeadteacher, Park Hill Primary School
- Thank you and Trevor as well for the way in which the day ran yesterday (and the interactions preceding it). Staff were challenged yet felt this to be supportive; quite a difficult balance to strike.
Collaborative review of leadership, 31st January 2017Simon AscroftHeadteacher, Biddulph High School
- The training was brilliant. It really made you reflect and think in depth about why, what and how you monitor and challenges you to go and have different discussions about it with relevant people in your school. I shared some ideas with governors and middle leaders. Very motivating and enthusiastic trainers.
Monitoring for Impact training, June '17Liz DavisAssociate Headteacher
- Hello Louise - thank you for your support both before and during your visit. It really did make me think about not only our practice, but how to look at things in a differently.
Incisive document & data review, December '16Nadeem BhattiHeadteacher, Shaw Hill Primary School
- Your days training certainly helped a lot . The HMI thought both the SEF & Development plan were very good.
Remote review of SEF & SIP followed by in-house leadership training, September '16Phil AdamsHeadteacher, The Corbet School
- At Grange Primary School, we have consulted with Louise and Simon to raise the progress, attainment and enrichment provided for pupil premium pupils. We have found their advice invaluable and have changed our whole ethos towards our disadvantaged children as a result. We would highly recommend Louise and Simon Blackburn from Challenging Education.”
Pupil Premium review, Spring term 2017Charlie SummersHeadteacher, Grange Primary School
- Trevor worked closely with us supporting us on our journey to good and he provided the right balance of challenge and support. He was always approachable and provided practical timely advice that helped to ensure that we remained focused on the important issues. Trevor is someone you can trust to be honest and supportive in a professional and positive way.Dr. Michael ManderEdge Hill Junior School