New partnership to improve education in Liverpool

April 5, 2022

Liverpool City Council is to invest three-quarters of a million pounds in improving its schools and teachers

The ground-breaking initiative is the first of its kind across the country, and will provide a three-year investment programme in the city’s schools.

The new partnership, between Ambition Institute and Liverpool City Council, will see 400 teachers and school leaders across 80 schools benefit from intensive training and support for three years.

It builds on the success of the Education Improvement Board, which prioritised recruiting, developing, supporting and retaining the best teachers and leaders.

Schools in the city will benefit with three areas of support:

  • In-depth professional development across the whole school, using Ambition Institute’s Transforming Teaching programme.
  • A bespoke ‘Future Heads’ course for at least 25 of the highest performing teachers and leaders in the area, to help prepare them for headship.
  • An intensive course for ‘teacher educators’ – teachers who support other teachers with professional learning. They receive focussed face-to-face training on the tools, knowledge and evidence that helps teachers improve their practice; one-to-one coaching to support them; and the opportunity to plan and deliver their own training, supported by Ambition’s experts.

The investment is aimed at developing a community of expert teachers working right across the authority, supported by school leaders who can shape culture, curriculum and continuous professional development.

The funding aims to support pupil outcomes in the city and improve attainment, particularly for pupils who have had a tough start in life. Currently 30% of pupils in Liverpool are in receipt of free school meals. Recent evidence shows that students from disadvantaged backgrounds are on average 22 months behind non-disadvantaged students in Liverpool.1

Cllr Tom Logan, cabinet member for education and skills for Liverpool City Council, said: “This is a trailblazing partnership to deliver bespoke training and development to the city’s legion of educators. Not only are we the first local authority in England to implement this package of support, we’re also making sure it has a legacy. By training teachers to become high-quality teacher educators, we are setting ourselves up for a future of continued improvement.”

The training will be provided by education charity Ambition Institute, which has a long legacy of supporting teachers and leaders working in disadvantaged communities. The initiative was spearheaded by National Partnerships Director, Raksha Pattni, who was given a Northern Power Women award for her work in education in 2020.

She said: “A great teacher changes the future every day. Especially for children who’ve had a tough start in life, a teacher can be the critical factor in their success. The sad truth is that too many children from disadvantaged backgrounds fall behind their classmates. The gap between them grows throughout their school career, so that by the time they leave secondary school, they’re three times less likely to end up in employment, education or training.

“The quality of teaching is by far the biggest factor within schools that makes a difference to what these children achieve – three times greater than the impact of any other action a school can take.

“This initiative is the first of its kind in any local authority. We’re honoured to work with Liverpool to launch this in-depth support for schools and looking forward to supporting teachers and leaders across the city.”