We are pleased and excited to be working with two fantastic local Schools – Lindens Primary and Evolve Teaching School Alliance – based at Barr Beacon School.


We welcomed 33 ITT’s from across the borough as part of our continued work with Barr Beacon and the Evolve Teaching School. They had an amazing experience and saw a different approach to teaching and learning that will support them with their future studies/experiences (see carousel week information pack)

Below are some of the comments made by students who attended and the overall feedback following the experience is available here.

‘Staff and pupils were absolutely delightful and welcoming’

‘An amazing School that I really enjoyed visiting.  Students seem to enjoy every day and are very respectful’

‘The more informal atmosphere but also practical approach to education.  It’s not just about qualifications but life experience and skills’

‘The opportunities pupils are given to develop responsibility and ownership of work and behaviour.  Staff are open and enthusiastic and evidently care enormously about their work’

‘The family feel, everyone knows everyone else.  Fun’

‘Relationships and sense of family.  All about the children’

Following on from hosting the carousel week and forwarding our evaluations the following excellent survey results were received:-

  Strongly Agree Agree Disagree Strongly Disagree  
Carousel Week – Elmwood School (SEND) – was of a high quality, relevant and useful 88.24%








Carousel Week has impacted on my approaches to teaching 52.94%






The carousel week developed key skills to meet the needs of all students including those with SEND 67.65%






I have benefitted from the experiences during Carousel Week 82.35%






Lindens logoLINDENS PRIMARY SCHOOL  – http://www.lindens.walsall.sch.uk

Feedback received from Lindens School staff following training delivered by Elmwood include comments such as:

‘good course, with a good flow that you didn’t realise  the time’

‘being put at ease during practical activities’

‘the knowledge and skill of the trainer’

‘excellent, knowledgeable delivery focused on school provisions’

‘having such a small group was really helpful and supportive’

‘enjoyed the course, Presenter enthusiastic and thought provoking’

‘the course was very informative and helpful for implementation within setting’

‘I thought the training was delivered in a really professional way and was really clear’

‘Practical, lots of ideas, especially accessibility issues’

‘Ideas to develop outdoor enviornment at my School. Information provided where resources can be obtained’

‘Ideas, shring ideas/wishes and ways of achieving solutions in simple ways.  Realising what can be done’

Elmwood School was highlighted within a local primary school’s recent Ofsted report (May 2015) reinforcing the impact we are having within the Lindens Teaching School Alliance and supporting staff and pupils with behaviour. Due to the impact of Martin Hawkes (SLE – Behaviour and Discipline) the school was able to secure a good judgement for behaviour and safety. The report highlighted the following:

“Behaviour and attitude to learning are good”
“Pupils say they feel safe in the school”
“Acknowledged working with Elmwood Special School as a partner”
“Effective behaviour strategies in dealing with behaviour have helped to improve”
“Pupils enjoy taking responsibilities”

This is a positive example of partnership and collaboration working across phases and raising the profile of the staff at Elmwood School and sharing our “unique” strategies to support the whole child with their behaviour.  Click to view Ofsted Report. Pinfold Street Primary School Ofsted Report 2015

Many congratulations to Simon Griffiths, Headteacher and National Leader of Education at Lindens Primary who was recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2016 and has been awarded an MBE for services to Education.  What an amazing achievement and very well done and deserved Simon.


Mr Whittaker, Outdoor Learning teacher at Elmwood, successfully delivered a training course on ancient living skills to surrounding Schools on 13th July.  Teachers sampled a variety of options including cave painting, archery, foraging and cooking skills and thoroughly enjoyed the training.  The aim is to bring their pupils to enjoy similar experiences as inspiration for their topic work back at their own Schools.  Feedback from participants was very positive stating that the presenter was excellent, knowledgeble and really passionate about the subject and how much they enjoyed the practical elements of the course.

evolve vertical  EVOLVE TEACHING SCHOOL ALLIANCE – BARR BEACON SCHOOL – http://www.barrbeaconschool.co.uk/teaching-school

Evolve Action Plan

Power Point

SLE Action Plan Proforma

Evolve initial bid 2015

As part of the continued success with the Evolve Teaching School (based at Barr Beacon School) we have been successful in being an integral part of their SCITT status from 2016-17. This is testament to the continued hard work of staff and pupils in making the teachers of the future welcome within our environment and enabling them to see a different perspective around education that one size doesn’t fit all.

Recently two members from the Multi-Media Support Team at Barr Beacon School came into School and spent time in all bases as well as observing out and about lessons.  What they observed has now been put into a short video which highlights the great work and learning taking place at Elmwood School.

Elmwood School has received the allocation of one English, one Maths and one Geography trainee teacher to be a part of the Barr Beacon SCITT programme 2017/18. UCAS opens for applications 18th October 2016 and we will be notified if a candidate makes an application. All of the subject profiles are on our SCITT website www.barrbeaconschool.co.uk/itt/subjects and the UCAS codes for each school are detailed within each of the subject profiles.

We interviewed an English trainee teacher for 2016/17 but unfortunately they were not successful, this was still  a positive outcome as it meant that people are interested in teaching at Elmwood.


Some of our Year 11 students have benefited from receiving science revision sessions from some of the SCITT students from Barr Beacon School.

Below are some of the comments made by students on their evaluation forms:-

‘the session has inspired me to learn more about digestion’

‘I really liked the digestion lesson and enjoyed the photosynthesis lesson’

‘all the teachers were welcoming but the digestion teacher was the most welcoming’

 A very big thank you to the SCITT students who gave their time and supported our young people, it is very much appreciated and will hopefully show in their examination results.


Two members of the Senior Leadership Team from Barr Beacon School attended Elmwood on 7th March to undertake a review of teaching, learning and assessment to help support our own judgments.  Below is a copy of the report that we received following this visit and a big thank you to David Lowbridge-Ellis, Deputy Head and Stuart Foster, Assistant Headteacher, for their time and comments.

Evolve Letter March 2017


A Professional Study Day took place on Friday 2nd  December.  The full day involved professional development in the morning and then an opportunity to participate in enrichment activities in the afternoon before providing an evaluation of their experience to enable future ITT’s to experience another side of education.

The professional standards that were addressed throughout the day include:

Activity Teaching Standards Addressed
Reflective Practice and being child centred as a school. Led by Mr Lee Cross (Deputy Headteacher) Promote good progress and outcomes by pupils
2.5  encourage pupils to take a responsible and conscientious attitude to their own work and studyManage behaviour effectively to ensure a good and safe learning environment
7.1  have clear rules and routines for behaviour in classrooms, and takeresponsibility for promoting good and courteous behaviour both in classrooms and around the school, in accordance with the school’s behaviour policy;Fulfil wider professional responsibilities
8.1  make a positive contribution to the wider life and ethos of the school;Teachers uphold public trust in the profession and maintain high standards of ethics and behaviour within and outside school, by:9. 1 treating pupils with dignity, building relationships rooted in mutual respect, and at all times observing proper boundaries appropriate to a teacher’s professional position.9. 2 having regard for the need to safeguard pupils’ well-being, in accordance with statutory provisions.9. 3 showing tolerance of and respect for the rights of others9. 5 ensuring that personal beliefs are not expressed in ways which exploit pupils’ vulnerability or might lead them to break the law.
An understanding of attachment disorder and how it affects my practice. Led by Mr Simon Hubbard (Headteacher). Promote good progress and outcomes by pupils
2.2  plan teaching to build on pupils’ capabilities and prior knowledge;
2.4  demonstrate knowledge and understanding of how pupils learn and how this impacts on teaching;Adapt teaching to respond to the strengths and needs of all pupils
5.1  know when and how to differentiate appropriately, using approaches which enable pupils to be taught effectively;
5.2  have a secure understanding of how a range of factors can inhibit pupils’ ability to learn, and how best to overcome these;
5.3  demonstrate an awareness of the physical, social and intellectual development of children and know how to adapt teaching to support pupils’ education at difference stages of development;
5.4  have a clear understanding of the needs of all pupils, including those with special educational needs; those of high ability; those with
English as an additional language; those with disabilities, and able to use and evaluate distinctive teaching approaches to engage and support them.

Second day exerpiences will take place for the 30 delegates during the period 13.1.17 to 24.3.17 when students will be allocated for form groups for the day.

Below are copies of the evaluation summary reports completed by students at the end of their training sessions.

Professional Study Day Evaluation Form Dec – Jan 2016

Evaluations 2016-17

Having spent a day in School on Friday 10th February, we have since received the following message from Abagial, one of the SCITT students:

‘I just wanted to email to thank you at Elmwood again for the opportunity of visiting the school for the day on Friday as part of the Barr Beacon SCITT training programme. I really enjoyed and valued the experience; the staff were brilliant and you can see how much they care and value the students well-being and future. The students themselves were very welcoming and friendly throughout the whole day, it was a pleasure to spend some time with them. I look forward to my next visit as part of the SCITT training programme.’

Our latest school experience day took place on Wednesday 24th May when we welcomed students from Barr Beacon School who spent the morning with our Specialist Outdoor Education Teacher, Mr Dan Whittaker.

RETURN TO TEACHING?? – see flyers as to how Evolve can help with this. Subject-FlyerNEW School-Experience flyersCareers-Recruitment-Event flyer