#311 Norwich Inclusion Charter – Boudica Schools Trust
Clare Jones, Executive Director of Education, Boudica Schools Trust
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What did we do?
I have been involved in the Norwich Opportunity Area Inclusion Charter project from the start, firstly as a Norwich head teacher, then as a CEO of a small Trust and now Director of Education at a larger Trust with primary and secondary schools in Norwich. I have also been part of the Inclusion Working Group who have monitored the impact of the Norwich Inclusion Charter.
The charter is a useful reference point when we have a child who is at risk of exclusion. It helps to focus our Senior Leadership Team on what we are doing for our children who are at risk of exclusion to ensure that we are doing everything we can and accessing the support of external agencies.
Feedback from a Norwich primary school headteacher.
Summary of impact
The Inclusion Charter totally changed the conversation around inclusion (and naturally exclusion). It stopped it being about “I can’t have this child anymore” to “Right, now we can’t meet the needs of this child. Are there any other schools that could help?”. It became a collective response to challenging behaviour rather than an ‘out of sight-out of mind’ response, either through permanently excluding a child or through a poorly managed move.
As a headteacher I ensured the Charter was shared amongst all staff so that they had a full understanding of what the aim was and that any work done with children (especially work they didn’t agree with) was to achieve that aim within a bigger City-wide picture. As a MAT leader I ensured the headteachers were following the charter and the protocols within it.
What would we do differently
I suggest we should have created a secondary charter and a primary charter to aid clarity.
No direct costs, just the time taken to be involved with the development and promotion of the project.
See how others have implemented this Big Idea
Setting Up a Young Carers Network - Mile Cross Primary School
School staff underwent training in the Thrive approach and Senior Leadership Team Thrive training funded by the Norwich Opportunity Area (NOA) and then implemented the Thrive approach at The Free School Norwich to benefit the emotional and social needs of its pupils.
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