Wednesday, 2 September 2009

"Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan “Press On” has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."
Calvin Coolidge

The new year has started under a huge dark cloud with Bill Pullen's death but looking back over the last year, our eighth year here in Leeds, we have to remember that we have had another great year with some extraordinary successes...

Just look at what our best primary schools, secondary schools, SILCs and PRUs have achieved over the last year and simply imagine what we could achieve together if everyone was as passionate, as committed and determined, as prepared to go the extra mile and as focused and as excellent as the most inspiring and exceptional colleagues in the best bits of Education Leeds and in those outstanding schools.

I know that I say this every year but these next few months are critical for Education Leeds and Children Services as we approach the a new set of opportunities and challenges with the new OFSTED Framework, 21st Century Schools, the National Challenge, more DCSF initiatives, even more focus on standards, safeguarding and with more Academies rolling across the learning landscape; a learning landscape where money is going to be increasingly tight and with local and national elections likely to bring even more change and challenge.

We must continue to challenge each other; to clearly articulate our goals and our roles and make belonging to Children's Services, Education Leeds and the learning team here in Leeds a vibrant, exciting and dynamic part of our lives. I’ll try to get to as many schools, centres, team meetings and talk to as many of you as I can to listen to your views and to get your advice, help and support for the next stage in our journey to excellence, our journey to world class.

Just don’t let anyone tell you that it can’t be done!


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