When assessing their CPD requirements, Scientia Academy identified the need to offer the whole school workforce an opportunity to access personalised training on demand.

After searching for a comprehensive CPD package that would enable them to continue their professional development remotely, the academy opted for a School Membership with The National College.

Helen Bye, Headteacher, and Laura Hands, Deputy Headteacher, joined us to discuss the highlights of their journey so far.

A flexible approach to CPD

Face-to-face training just wasn’t something which was going to be a possibility, but our state-of-the-art learning hub was something that alleviated this worry.

Helen explained: "It started with us, due to the pandemic, noticing that it has become a lot harder to put together quality CPD for internal staff development."

"One of the first things I searched for was some online training that we could tap into, that teachers could do remotely." she continued.

“That’s how I came across The National College”.

Having already experienced The National College’s CPD as a pay-as-you go customer, Helen wanted to see the full library of expert-led video CPD that our platform had to offer.

"I've had good experiences with The National College in the past, and you have the reputation that we were looking for." she revealed.

"As a school, we're always committed to getting the most up-to-date, relevant and best quality CPD that we can."

Helen commented: "We've had a unique opportunity to grow our staff around our own ethos."

High-quality CPD for the whole school workforce

Laura Hands, Deputy Headteacher, said: "Making sure that we get that high-quality CPD is really aligned to that expectation that we're developing people quite early in their careers."

"The broad range of CPD that is available on The National College is what really drew me in." she concluded.

Helen stated: "It was really, really good value for the number of courses and the flexibility."

Ease of access for all staff members

At The National College, we pride ourselves on the flexibility of our CPD, which allows staff to undertake training on the go, anytime, anywhere and on any device.

Scientia Academy have found this invaluable: "The fact that you can complete the CPD in your own time, you can assign things to individual staff members, and they can do it at their own leisure."

"It really appeals to the current climate and moving forward I think this is the way it is going to stay." she said.

Laura explained: "I think we want to develop staff but ensure that the CPD isn't too onerous. The fact that they can dip in and out, managing it within their own time, is fantastic."

“It gives them that flexibility”.

Speaking in specific terms, Helen drew attention to the school’s SEND provision and how training from The National College has been a huge support.

"Some of the SEND-focused CPD really stood out, it matches well with some of our school development priorities around SEND provision." she said.

Laura added: "I completed the Senior Mental Health Lead Course yesterday, and I really enjoyed the session."

"I spent some time looking through the watch lists and was really impressed with how many other webinars I could link the training to." she observed.

A key takeaway for Scientia Academy has been the flexibility of our award-winning platform.

Helen revealed: "I think it's the flexibility and the broad range of CPD that's available."

"At the moment, we've only got our teachers signed up to the platform. As it develops, we want to expand that to include our teaching assistants, as I can see a lot of the webinars would be perfect." she said.

Aligned to the latest DfE guidance and Ofsted expectations

Keeping abreast of policy and guidance updates can be a challenge, but Helen was quick to point out just how much of a help The National College have been in this regard.

She declared: "It's the fact that you're updating it constantly and it's that research-based teaching and learning approach."

"It's got that potential to offer us CPD over a number of years."


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