WE1 Early Years

New appointment: Senior Officer: Early Years Sufficiency and Business Support

We are pleased to be able to share the news that Mandy Latham has been successful in being appointed to the role of Senior Officer for Early Years Sufficiency and Business Support, initially for a six month secondment. 

Mandy will take up her new post on 28 October following a handover period with Diana Spragg, the current Senior Officer. 

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank Diana for her hard work and commitment to Early Years provision in Warwickshire and wish her well in the future.

Free networking and development for Early Years managers

Early Years Managers meetings offer the opportunity for all managers, practitioners and childminders working in Early Years to share good practice, work collaboratively and build up a network of people who can offer guidance and advice. 

They are completely free to attend.

Agenda for Autumn Term meetings

  • Early Years draft strategy
  • Warwickshire EYFS data
  • Safeguarding update
  • Local and national updates
  • Current Ofsted statistics and key recommendations arising from the reports
Date Venue Time
5 November 2019

Benn Partnership, Railway Terrace, Rugby, CV21 3NR

2.30pm - 4pm
5 November 2019 Inspirational Learning & Training Hub, Corner Heath/Smart Roads, Bedworth, CV12 0BN 6.30pm - 8pm
11 November 2019 CHESS Centre, 460 Cedar Rd, Camphill, Nuneaton, CV10 9DN 10am - 11.30am
19 November 2019 Graham Adams Centre, St James Road, Southam, CV47 0LF 6.30pm - 8pm
26 November 2019 Holy Trinity CE Primary School, The Willows North, Alcester Rd, Stratford, CV37 9QN 6.30pm - 8pm

To book a place on any of the above sessions please visit www.warwickshireearlyyears.co.uk

Protective Behaviours training

For a full size version of the flyer please click the image belowProtective Behaviours training

WE2 An empowering curriculum

Warwickshire wins bid for new funding to support family services

Funding has been secured to expand the help and support that the council can offer to local children and families. We are one of 15 new areas selected to join three early adopters and be part of the Government’s Strengthening Families, Protecting Children programme.

This programme supports local authorities to adapt and adopt one of three children’s social care innovation projects in their own area. We will be working closely with Leeds City Council on the Family Valued programme. The project focuses on changing service-wide ways of working with children and families so that support is done with them and not to them. It aims to build strong relationships with children and their families and connect them with the communities in which they live.

The three demonstrator sites have shown that working with a family’s strengths and helping them to find their own solutions creates stronger, more resilient family units. This new investment will support the council’s objectives to enhance services and extend the offer of early help to make sure that families get the right support, ensuring children’s needs are met.

The funds will be used specifically to expand the Family Group Conference (FGC) Service which supports families to identify their strengths and build on these to find solutions and resolve their own issues. The Special Guardianship Support Team who provide help for grandparents, aunts and uncles to help children to stay within their wider family will be extended and further training and support will be rolled out to partner agencies.

For more information about this visit: https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/children-families


Supporting learners with Developmental Language Disorder (DLD)

Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) is more common than autism, is seen more commonly in girls than boys and affects around two children in every primary classroom, but despite this, it is not widely known about.

Previously known as Specific Language Disorder (SLD) or Specific Language Impairment (SLI), DLD means that a child has significant, on-going difficulties understanding and/or using spoken language.

A young person with DLD may also have other difficulties such as; Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and / or speech sound difficulties.

Language disorders can also be associated with other medical conditions such as ASC (Autistic Spectrum Condition), genetic conditions (e.g. Down Syndrome), sensorineural hearing loss, physical impairment, severe learning difficulties or brain injuries. 

There are many difficulties that can be experienced as part of having DLD such as:

  • paying attention in class
  • understanding instructions and new information
  • remembering what has been said
  • limited vocabulary and finding their words
  • telling narratives
  • putting their thoughts into words - their meaning may be lost or unclear
  • joining in and social skills
  • understanding and managing emotions

This is not an exhaustive list, as DLD can manifest itself in different ways depending on the individual and their specific needs may change with time.

How do I support a young person with DLD?

  • Remember your universal strategies!
  • Ensure there is a Communication Friendly Environment which takes into account visual support systems, the teacher’s delivery and the environment of the school.
  • Grab their attention — say their name before asking questions or giving instructions so they know they have to listen.
  • Visual cues (demonstration, gesture and pictures such as Widgit) will help them understand and remember information.
  • Use simple sentences and short instructions. Check they have understood instructions or new information.
  • Give the young person more time to think, find their words and express themselves.
  • Praise their effort and acknowledge what they have said, to support their confidence in speaking.
  • Encourage them to communicate with you however they can, accept gesture and facial expressions.                                             

If you would like further information about strategies or have any concerns about a young person in your school, please contact the Area Manager for your area using the contacts below:

North STS: Louise Hunt or Paul Fellows – Tel: 01926 413777

East STS: Claire Batchelor – Tel: 01788 338130

South STS: Tammy Mason – Tel: 01926 476600

Invitation to launch of new Protective Behaviours resource pack

Protective Behaviours ResourceA new, comprehensive resource has been developed to help primary and special schools support children to develop strategies for self-protection, teaching them how to recognise and trust their own feelings and boost self-esteem.

The new curriculum pack is part of the Protective Behaviours work, which has been at the heart of the Taking Care scheme for the past 18 years. The Taking Care scheme aims to improve the safety and wellbeing of children in Warwickshire by teaching them how to keep themselves safer in a variety of situations.

Protective Behaviours is an internal process, meaning that each person applies the ideas to their own unique experience. It is essentially a safety awareness and resilience building programme which helps children and adults to recognise any situation where they feel worried or threatened and explores practical ways to stay safe.

The programme has become well embedded in the majority of our primary schools, with the Protective Education Curriculum Resource pack, written by the Taking Care Project Manager, Ann Seal, now on its third edition.

Following a suggestion by headteacher, Jen Roberts, Ann invited staff from across the special school sector to come together to share practice ideas and as a result of this, and Ann's own extensive experience that she has picked up over the years, a brand new and comprehensive resource pack has been developed. 

Launch events

Protective Behaviour schools have been invited to a launch event, where their delegated staff member can join others in exploring the new resource, in the hope that this will encourage lots of use back in their schools. The events will take place on 5, 12 and 18 November 2019. If you would like to attend the launch event or require further details, please contact Sophie Morley on 01926 742601 or email sophiemorley@warwickshire.gov.uk.

Whole school training

It is highly recommended that you book in some whole school training if: less than 90% of staff have been trained and/or it is more than five years since you received whole school training. If this is your school, or if you just wish to provide a refresher for your staff, then please contact Ann Seal - email annseal@warwickshire.gov.uk

We are excited to hear what schools do with the resources and we would encourage you to keep Ann updated with your pictures and successes so these can be shared with others too.  

Help to raise awareness of foster carer opportunities in Warwickshire

There are approximately 70 children and young people across Warwickshire currently seeking foster care. Foster care provides a safe place for children and young people when they need it most, and can range from providing a safe place to sleep for a night to long term placements with a range of other types of fostering in between.

Foster carers are always needed throughout Warwickshire and Warwickshire County Council are focused on placing children within the county, allowing children to be near their school, friends and family, making the move into foster care a more stable transition for them.

Foster care involves a range of different types of care; some types of foster care can be done alongside employment, and others require full time commitment and cannot be carried out while in other employment, however for those options the payment is salaried.

Your support to help us reach a wider audience, helping to raise awareness of the foster carer opportunities at WCC is important to us so we can recruit more foster carers into our team. This case study from one of our foster carers who specialises in parent and child foster care, illustrates how this role has impacted the foster carer, the support she provides to a parent and their child and how this has allowed her to spend more time with her family compared to her previous employment.

We ask for your kind support to help share this message in your newsletters and communications to parents, it may help someone who has been thinking about foster care make the decision to support children and their community and pursue a new career path.

Fighting for the Wellbeing of Young People

The Youth Sport Trust and the 401 Foundation 

The Youth Sport Trust (YST), founded 24 years ago, is on a mission to improve the wellbeing of all young people by helping them deal with the issues facing them today, such as loneliness and a decline in mental health and resilience.

Ben Smith is a YST Wellbeing Ambassador, endurance athlete and founder of the 401 Foundation. He has been fighting to raise awareness of the harmful effects of bullying for the past five years.

Together, YST and the 401 Foundation have an amazing track record in helping the young people of the UK. 

This academic year they are embarking on a new challenge to raise £1 million to support the wellbeing of our young people - and they need your help.

The USA 2020 Challenge: Journey to Wellbeing Education Programme

In a feat of extreme endurance, which will take him 104 days, Ben will be running one marathon in all 50 US states and cycling between them - a staggering total of 18,500 miles!

YST will be working with Ben to shine a spotlight on his challenge, encouraging schools, organisations and the community to fundraise for him and, in return, providing schools with inspirational education resources, which will allow them to follow Ben's progress whilst taking part in their own Journey to Wellbeing.

They hope that by working together, they can raise £1 million to fund vital mental health initiatives in schools and local communities across the UK, whilst giving schools and young people practical ways of embedding wellbeing in their daily lives.

To register to take part in the USA 2020: Journey to Wellbeing Education Programme today visit the website: https://www.youthsporttrust.org/USA2020.


WE3 Family of schools

Provisional key stage 4 headlines

Provisional key stage 4 data has now been released and we thought it would be helpful, at this stage, to share the headline figures for Warwickshire with you (thanks to James McNeillie HMI for providing us with this summary).

Below are the rankings for Warwickshire, out of 152 local authorities, for each KS4 measure:

  • Rank 25 - Attainment 8
  • Rank 25 - English and maths grade 9-5
  • Rank 32 - EBacc average point score per pupil
  • Rank 54 - % EBacc entered
  • Rank 59 - Progress 8

Comparison to previous years' results

The figures show an upwards trend in the ranking for Attainment 8, with Warwickshire improving its position the last two years running, moving up six places in total, from 31st place in 2017 and 29th in 2018. 

Progress 8 has dropped from previous years - from 43rd in 2018 and 42nd in 2017 - to bring us more in line with the West Midlands.

Warwickshire has improved one place on it’s 2018 ranking for the EBacc average point score, moving from 33rd to 32nd.

A report will be taken to the Children and Young People Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting on 26 November, detailing the performance of children and young people in Warwickshire schools in statutory national tests in 2019, including early years foundation stage, key stage 1, 2 and 4, and post 16 results. Papers are usually published one week before the meeting and will be made available on this webpage.

2019 secondary inspection data summary report (IDSR) prototype release

The prototype of Ofsted's new secondary inspection data summary report (IDSR) has been released. 

It shows the layout and content of the new secondary IDSR using example data and is located within the new IDSR guidance document on GOV.UK: IDSR prototype.

Important reminders:

  • The 2019 inspection data summary report (IDSR) for primary data, is available in DfE’s Analyse School Performance (ASP). When logged in to ASP, please click on all reports, then click on Ofsted inspection data summary reports, and finally click on Visit the Ofsted IDSR service. Your PDF 2019 report will pop up. The IDSRs currently hold provisional data for key stage 2, key stage 1 and phonics, and context data.
  • This year, the Children Looked After collection closure date was delayed (due to technical issues) by five weeks. Therefore, the Children Looked After data and data for disadvantaged pupils will not be included until the revised data releases.
  • At the same time as the provisional secondary release, the DfE will be removing historic IDSRs from Analyse School Performance. Any users wishing to keep a copy of their historic IDSRs are advised to download and save their IDSRs before they are removed later in the autumn term. The DfE will communicate this again closer to the time.

Should you have any IDSR data queries, please contact the Schools Pre-Inspection Data & Insight team at: School.Performance.Data@ofsted.gov.uk

ECB and associated group meeting dates 2019/20

Please find below a list of key dates for meetings facilitated by WCC involving headteachers for the rest of the 2019/20 academic year. Contact details for each of the groups are included below if you would like any further information.

Education Challenge Board Meetings

05 Dec 2019, 9.30am - 11.30am

25 March 2020, 9.30am - 11.30am

01 July 2020, 9.30am - 11.30am

For further information contact Sarah Taylor, email sarahtaylor@warwickshire.gov.uk, tel 01926 742004

Teaching School Capacity Board

12 Dec 2019, 10am - 12pm

12 Feb 2020, 10am - 12pm

31 Mar 2020, 1.30pm - 3.30pm

20 May 2020, 10am - 12pm

30 Jun 2020, 1.30pm - 3.30pm

For further information contact Sophie Thompson, email sophiethompson@warwickshire.gov.uk, tel 01926 746961

Closing the Gap Project Board

10 Dec 2019, 10am - 12pm

19 Mar 2020, 10am - 12pm

11 Jun 2020, 10am - 12pm

For further information contact Sophie Thompson, email sophiethompson@warwickshire.gov.uk, tel 01926 746961

Schools Causing Concern Meetings

25 Nov 2019, 2pm - 4pm

18 Mar 2020, 2pm - 4pm

24 Jun 2020, 2pm - 4pm

For further information contact Hilary Honess, email hilaryhoness@warwickshire.gov.uk, tel 01926 745621

Area Analysis Groups

Central AAG
04 Dec 2019, 1.30pm - 3.30pm 

17 Mar 2020, 1.30pm - 3.30pm

25 Jun 2020, 10am - 12pm

Eastern AAG
28 Nov 2019, 10am - 12pm

05 Mar 2020, 10am - 12pm

18 Jun 2020, 10am - 12pm

Northern, Nuneaton and Bedworth Primary AAG
26 Nov 2019, 1pm - 3pm

03 Mar 2020, 10am - 12pm

16 Jun 2020, 10am - 12pm

Northern, Nuneaton and Bedworth Secondary AAG
26 Nov 2019, 10am - 12pm

03 Mar 2020, 1pm - 3pm

16 Jun 2020, 1pm - 3pm

Southern AAG
03 Dec 2019, 10am - 12pm

04 Mar 2020, 10am - 12pm

23 Jun 2020, 1pm - 3pm

For further information contact Sophie Thompson, email sophiethompson@warwickshire.gov.uk, tel 01926 746961

Primary Consortia Chairs’ Group

27 Nov 2019, 1pm - 4.30pm

04 Feb 2020, 1pm - 4.30pm

11 Mar 2020, 1pm - 4.30pm

05 May 2020, 1pm - 4.30pm

17 Jun 2020, 1pm - 4.30pm

For further information contact Hilary Honess, email hilaryhoness@warwicskhire.gov.uk, tel 01926 745621

WE4 Employability

Health Sector workshop for pupils - 13 November

Health is a sector with significant skills shortages in the county so we are keen to enable young people and teachers to find out about the careers on offer.  Therefore, we are funding a half-day workshop introducing a range of occupations to pupils in a fun, interactive way.

The workshop will take place in both the morning and afternoon at the Nuneaton Academy on 13 November.  It will be repeated in the south of the county later in the year or in early 2020. 

Full details have been sent to Careers Leaders, however if your school has not received the invitation or you would like more details you can contact glennrobinson@warwickshire.gov.uk

Free Aspiring Professionals Programme for year 12 students

Applications for the Social Mobility Foundation's free Aspiring Professionals Programme (APP) are now open for 2020.

The APP supports high achieving Year 12 students from low income backgrounds across the UK to access top universities and careers.

Support is offered through their four pillars:

1.       Mentoring by a professional

2.       Tailored skills sessions and career workshops

3.       University application support and guidance

4.       Internships with top employers

Please check out the links below for further information and guidance:

Application Form

Eligibility Criteria

Guidance notes for teachers

School visit request form - if you would like someone from APP to come and talk to your students about the programme you can request a school visit

Hear from some of the students who have received support in previous years

The deadline for applications is 12 noon on Wednesday 18 December 2019.

The APP is keen to support as many students as possible from Warwickshire this year so we hope you will encourage students to apply.

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