The report found that London schools have improved dramatically since 2000 in a way that cannot be explained in terms of the advantages that London has over the rest of England. Importantly the improvement was assisted by a set of ‘enabling’ resource factors and four key school improvement interventions provided the impetus for improvement – London Challenge, Teach First, the academies programme and improved support from local authorities. The report concluded that the improvement of London schools depended upon effective leadership at every level of the system.
LLS welcomes the report’s findings on the transformative role that London Challenge played in driving improvement across the capital, spearheading the belief that it is possible to make radical improvement in outcomes for students from deprived backgrounds as well as the roles of key LLS leads, Professor David Woods and Dame Sue John.
It is 11 years since the London Challenge was launched by Professor Tim Brighouse and subsequently led by Professor David Woods and in that time there has been significant evidence on the impact London Challenge has had on individual schools and pupils.
LLS was born of London Challenge and today takes forward its successes and strategies, adapting them to the contemporary education context. The organisation, led by serving Headteachers, continues to connect and inspire schools in London and beyond under the leadership of Professor David Woods as Chair, Dame Sue John as Secondary Director and a number of senior Headteachers who played pivotal roles in the London Challenge as system leaders and supported schools.
Anita Kerwin-Nye, Managing Director of London Leadership Strategy said:
“It is important to continue the momentum that London has established and share it with the rest of England. London Challenge showed us there is a recipe for success. There is no ‘magic bullet’ and we must continuously learn and adapt to meet children and young people’s educational needs. Ongoing London Challenge programmes that run throughout England, as well as research in to what worked, enables us to do this through peer to peer support and evidence-based practice.
“LLS, and other good school improvement partnerships, are taking on the legacy of London Challenge. Interventions and programmes derived from London Challenge including Keys to Success, Challenge the Gap, school to school support, the relentless focus on teaching and learning and the use of benchmarking data have made and continue to demonstrate a marked impact on attainment gaps.
“LLS is taking the lessons learnt from London across England and is now working with primary and secondary schools in Norfolk, Poole, Somerset and South Gloucestershire, amongst others.”
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