Rachel Barker – SLE Pen Portrait

SLE Specialism: Science, Leadership of Curriculum

Whilst working at my current school I have quickly found a passion for Teaching and Learning and my enthusiasm for developing my own practice and that of others grows with every day.  I am a firm believer that teachers are learners too and every teacher can improve – not because they are not good enough, but because they can be even better.

I have been fortunate to gain experience in Leadership at my current school. My roles have given me an insight into the importance of sharing areas of expertise to ensure that colleagues have the necessary skills and confidence to make a difference to students.

Teaching and Learning Advocate

Working with T&L whole school enabled me to contribute to a rapid school improvement agenda. I was involved in policy development and implementation, coaching schemes and modelling excellent practice. I assisted with the development of Teaching and Learning Communities (TLCs) which succeeded in increasing the sharing of good practice across departments and developing staff confidence in three key T&L school improvement areas: differentiation, questioning and AFL.

Second in Department: Science

The Science Department has also undergone rapid improvement, growing from a satisfactory department to an outstanding department with excellent outcomes. A key example is the jump from 64% @-C in Core Science in 2013 to 94% in 2014. The strong structures we have in place, including progress tracking and curriculum maps, will allow us to focus on growing excellent teaching and learning practice amongst colleagues and moving towards a values-driven education.