Wednesday, 31 March 2010

I moved on to another brilliant learning place...

I visited the East SILC, at the John Jamieson site, where Diane Reynard, the principal, and her talented team are releasing a truly extra-ordinary magic in this outstanding learning place. I talked to Diane, Roger Cannon, the chair of governors, and the leadership team about some of the work this amazing learning place is doing for some of our most special children. I also judged their Easter egg competition and attended a special performance of Mary Poppins which was simply amazing. Diane and Roger then gave me a swift guided tour of the SILC. What struck me as we walked around the SILC was the quality of the provision and, as an ex-science teacher and inspector/adviser for science and technology, the wonderful specialist provision and the brilliant learning environments colleagues have created for science, design technology and home economics. The SILC has one of the best science environments in Leeds where colleagues have created an extra-ordinary context for science learning and teaching.

The SILCs are increasingly doing brilliant work in terms of providing an outstanding specialist offer, supporting partnership provision in resource and partnership schools and providing outreach training and support. We need to continue to develop our SEN and Disability Services building on the SILC model. We need to look at the gaps in our provision and ensure that provision and support is more consistent across the city particularly for older students. We also need to urgently look at the whole behavioural continuum and work to fill the gaps in terms of rapid respite response and provision for children exhibiting the most complex mental, emotional and behavioural problems.

It was brilliant to visit Diane and her great team who are making such a difference at the East SILC for some of our most special children.


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