Norfolk Head Teachers’ Conference

Barbara and I attended a fascinating and lively conference in Norwich on 6th November 2008. The title itself was inspiring – “From Good to Outstanding”. Jon Trotter, head teacher from Handford Hall Primary School in Ipswich, explained how he and his staff led the school through an exciting journey from Special Measures to Outstanding. He, with his deputy Kasha, talked about the innovations that they had introduced over a period of approximately five years that brought about this transformation. I was particularly interested and excited by the way he has used Philosophy for Children to help raise children’s ability to question and to think beyond the literal. He explained how this process gave children access to higher order thinking and the ability to analyse more sophisticated texts. This had an amazing result, in that children’s grades improved substantially in the English SATs!