Monday, 6 June 2016


I was in Doncaster this morning catching up with an old friend. Tim Brighouse, who was Director of Education in Birmingham before leading the London Challenge, is now working on the Doncaster Education and Skills Commission. 

The Commission was set up by ‘Team Doncaster’ the local strategic partnership of public services, business and the voluntary and community sector. It is an independent Commission that has been brought in to help raise attainment levels and ensure that young people have the skills needed to secure the new jobs that are being created in the borough. Which sounds a lot like the motives behind the Cutlers' "Made in Sheffield' programme when it started four years ago!

It was great to see Tim and catch up... I rarely get a chance to talk about the things that matter with someone who has achieved so much and still shares my passion and enthusiasm for learning. Tim was going on to meetings with John Innes, Headteacher, at Balby Carr Community Academy and with Martyn Oliver, Chief Executive of the Outwood Grange Academies Trust, at Outwood Academy Adwick.  John and Martyn are both strong and successful leaders who understand the need for learning leadership, strong systems and intelligent accountability built around a curriculum that engages young people and develops skills as well as knowledge and understanding. They are both strong supporters of our 'Better Learners, Better Workers' programme and I really hope that we can develop a small pilot and work with these two schools next year to continue to refine and develop the work we are doing across South Yorkshire.

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