SECRETARY’S REPORT 2014
This has been a year of new beginnings, with several new members on Committee, a change of chairman in January and a concentration on initiatives.
PR is of major concern, and I have had discussions with RSAcademics which have led to numerous moves, the main initial one being website.
The website www.fids.uk.com has been given a complete revamp by RSAcademics and is now much more user-friendly. The ‘School of the Week’ addition is helpful, with also many articles and blogs. I still find it difficult to extract blogs from serving heads – but will keep trying! We have yet to impact on member school websites, so that is a matter of urgency.
Our meetings with the Sutton Trust have borne fruit, and though it was long in coming, the survey to members on social mobility in our schools is being completed as I write and, hopefully, will be presented at conference. It remains vital that we get over the message that we are welcoming schools and not middle class ghettos.
Our Discussions with the Department of Education and OFSTED have also been fruit. We were invited to develop pilot Primary School Partnerships which could be used as exemplars for future partnerships. Similarly, OFSTED are interested in developing relationships with us as centres of excellence in order to use our schools to raise standards in primary schools. Examples of the initial pilots will be presented at Conference, and we hope to encourage all members to be involved, modelling the schemes to their individual circumstances.
The ISSP is re-organising and re-defining itself, and we have been involved in discussions. The main positive will be the establishment of a database of partnership models and schemes throughout the country, which would give hard evidence of partnership activities and scope.
As Secretary I have represented FIDS at the IISP Conference, the ISSP Forum, the Social Mobility Foundation, and held discussions with the Sutton Trust, DFE, OFSTED and HMC. Most of my time has been spent setting up and mobilising the Primary School Partnerships pilots and the Sutton Trust Questionnaires.
Membership : during the year we have added 12 members and had 5 withdrawals
Stephen Smith May 2014