The Enquiring Schools programme is a high-quality CPD programme that helps to develop a culture of enquiry and professional growth in schools. It enables teachers and support staff to connect with research evidence in a very practical way through setting up and evaluating their own small-scale enquiries.
The programme consists of a blend of face-to-face workshops and personalised coaching to help individuals improve their enjoyment and effectiveness of teaching. Since 2012 the programme has been adopted by more than 50 schools, academy chains and organisations across the UK.
The programme is tailored to address the priorities of the schools we work alongside. A cycle of enquiry usually moves through the following four stages.
A strategic planning session for school leaders
A planning meeting with a senior leader to discuss priorities and to agree how the programme will be tailored to your setting to maximise impact.
An Enquiring Schools launch event
The cycle begins with an introductory workshop led by skilled facilitators to introduce participants to the 7-step enquiry process. The 7-step approach offers a practical way to organise enquiries to ensure they are well-designed, rigorous and that evidence of impact can be captured and shared effectively. Participants are also shown how to find and use authoritative research evidence to inform their thinking.
A series of sessions from an expert coach and mentor
Our expert facilitators help guide participants through the 7-step enquiry process. School visits usually centre around one-to-one or small-group coaching sessions, helping participants to design and undertake a rigorous enquiry.
Typically, participants will be helped to identify relevant research, choose effective strategies, create research tools to help with the collection, analyses and interpretation of evidence. Towards the end of the cycle we discuss the best ways to present and share outcomes.
The number of visits is agreed before starting the programme. Most schools choose between three and four coaching sessions distributed across a year. These sessions can also include additional practical workshops and discussions at staff meetings.
A celebration of learning and sustainability workshop
At the end of the enquiry cycle we help to facilitate a festival of learning and sustainability workshop. Teacher enquiries are shared with others and, very importantly, we share strategies for embedding the learning into the ongoing DNA of the school.
An Enquiring Teachers certificate is awarded to participants to show that they have successfully completed a cycle of enquiry. These are sometimes used to support performance reviews and future career pathways.
In addition to the Enquiring Schools programme we also offer a number of other services.
Are you a senior leader, a research lead or head of CPD? If so, we offer a bespoke consultation and coaching service that you might find useful. We are able to offer expert advice on establishing your school as an evidence-informed researched-engaged organisation.
We are able to offer a review service, producing a report on the current situation and recommendations and resources for future development.
In addition to our Enquiring Schools service we are able to offer keynote talks and introductory workshops at your training day or conference.
We have provided inputs about the effectiveness of Teachers as Enquirers at events run by The Girls Day School Trust (London), Candleby Teaching School Alliance, (Leicester), Inspiring Leaders, (Nottingham), ResearchED (London), Olchfa School (Swansea) as well as at education events in Bilbao, Madrid and The Hague.
Every Enquiring School programme is tailored to meet the requirements of the organisations with which we work. The programme is costed to reflect the number of face-to-face sessions required to facilitate effective engagement with the programme.
For example, a single school wishing to have a launch day, 3 coaching sessions for key staff over two terms and a celebration/sustainability workshop could expect the cost to be in the region of £3200 (This is based on 6 days support over 12 months).
A cluster of 5 secondary schools requiring a shared launch day and a celebration/sustainability workshop, plus a series of one-to-one coaching sessions for 10 individuals running over two days and repeated on three occasions during the year could anticipate the cost to be in the region of £6600 (This based on a total of 10 days support over 12 months in two locations).
International Schools are costed separately to reflect additional travel requirements and the balance of in-country and online support. Travel for all schools is at cost.
Bespoke programmes with more or fewer sessions can also be designed. We suggest that a programme of three sessions (a launch event, a mid-point review and a sharing/sustainability workshop) should be the minimum you consider to make the programme effective.
Additionally, where appropriate, we are able to provide CPD workshops and keynotes at your training day or conference.
A bespoke consultation and coaching service is also available for individuals such as Senior leaders, Research Leads or Heads of CPD.