“CTC have been delivering English Language and Literature revision sessions at Harborne Academy for two years now. We always welcome them back as the consultants are full of passion, enthusiasm and professionalism. Not forgetting the golden nuggets of knowledge and exam skills they’re able to pass on to our students.”Samera Khatoon-Dhansey – Director of Learning, English – Harborne Academy, BIRMINGHAM
At the centre of our delivery is subject knowledge and subject expertise. Without this learning is not possible. This is why we recruit subject specialists who understand that positive relationships underpin learning and progress. Learners are approached respectfully but with challenge; learners need challenge in a safe, supportive environment.
We do not adopt “boot camp” approaches, integrate over-intrusive discipline approaches into our delivery or use unproven pseudo-scientific methods. We believe these approaches actually feed into the very problems that cause many young people to disengage from learning in the first place.
Why bother with intervention?
There are many people in the education world who believe that with quality-first teaching intervention is unnecessary. This belief defies the observations and understanding of any observant professional who is in a school or academy on a daily basis. We all know that people learn at different rates and this is true of learners in a classroom.
Some learners need that extra push, the reinforcement, that small group immersive experience to help them make that amazing progress which they are truly capable of. Some learners fall behind because of absence for a variety of reasons or because of some staffing issue which they may have experienced.
Intervention is just for 3-4 & 4-5 learners right?
This is a common misconception. Intervention is about helping a learner make the progress of which they are truly capable of, helping them to fulfil their potential. This could be a learner of any ability. Indeed, some of our most successful clients do not limit intervention to certain groups they run programs across the spectrum to ensure optimal learner progress.
With the Government’s new measure of school and academy performance, Progress 8, smart, targeted interventions will be part of the diet of approaches successful schools and academies will want to adopt. Why not take a look at the video on the right to find out more about Progress 8?
Early Intervention & The Matthew Effect
Our work on Early Intervention is informed by the scholarly work of the Sociologist Robert K. Merton who coined the term, The Matthew Effect, in 1968. The term comes from a quotation attributed to Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew:-
“To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken.”
What’s this got to do with me and my school or academy? Everything. Because Robert K. Merton used this saying to explain the phenomenon of how those who lag behind stay behind in terms of wealth, education and other areas of aspiration. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer. This isn’t just to do with wealth but with educational achievement too. Those who fall behind tend to stay behind.
How do we address this? How do we close the gap, diminish the difference? Early Intervention. Two key take away messages:-
1. Only with bespoke, intense and quality intervention can those who fall behind make progress and catch up with peers. If you’re a school or academy leader who thinks those falling behind need low cost interventions from the least qualified in your care then you are seriously misunderstanding the challenge facing those who have fallen behind face.
2. The key is early intervention. The longer a learner is left to falter and fall behind, the more difficult it will be to get them re-engaged and the less chance they have of catching up and fulling their potential.
Contact us now for an early intervention programme and start countering that Matthew Effect and being a social mobility champion!
Assessment Expertise is at the Core of Our intervention Programmes
The Assessment Box
In 2015 Steve Newlands founded The Assessment Box. This service brought together experienced Senior Examiners to produce original papers and to allow schools and academies to have these papers marked by practising examiners. This provided schools, students, parents and carers with reliable, valid and accurate feedback. This increasingly popular service is now a key part of our intervention programmes, giving learners clear diagnostic feedback and helping them on their trajectory towards success and progress.
Steve Newlands said of The Assessment Box: “I had encountered so many students and so many schools who achieved results not in-line with what they expected. Sometimes this was because of inaccurate assessments due to teachers who were not familiar with the specification or due to teachers just being over-worked and lacking the time to focus on this area. If our service is able to flag up a problem with performance early enough it gives the leaders within the school time to make appropriate interventions. Finding out there is a problem on results’ day often results in tragedy for young people and it has the potential to affect them and their futures seriously.”
Assessment Expertise is at the Core of Our intervention Programmes
DO YOU KNOW YOUR TARGET GROUP FOR INTERVENTION?
Part of challenging under-performance is having an “early warning” system to identify learners at risk of under-performance. What factors put learners at risk of under-performance? Well, some factors are listed below and you may wish to consider them:-
- Poor levels of attendance due to health, disengagement or social problems or challenges
- Learners who do not have access to good quality teaching due to teacher absence or recruitment challenges the school or academy is facing in a specific subject area
- Learners who are struggling to work at a level that shows they are on a trajectory towards their target level
- Learners who self-identify or whose parents/ carers identify them as being at risk of under-achievement
- In addition to this you will have access to a wealth of data that will help you to identify groups of learners who traditionally under-achieve in specific subject areas in your school or academy. Look at the data and ask yourself some questions about under-performance.
- Does the data support what i thought to be true in terms of performance / under-performance?
- Are there clear patterns over several years?
- Are the gaps in performance trending in a positive or negative manner? i.e. are they closing or increasing?
- Have we addressed them with an intervention strategy?
- What could we do to intervene in these under-performance patterns?
Some key points to be aware of and key questions to ask:-
- Be gender aware in certain subjects. For example, boys often under-achieve in English. IS this happening in your school or academy?
- Certain groups such as those in receipt of Pupil Premium tend to do significantly less well than learners not in receipt of PP. Note that some of our clients, with our support, have eliminated the gap between learners in receipt of Pupil Premium and learners not in receipt of Pupil Premium finding. Indeed some of them have reversed the gap partly due to our powerful interventions that have enabled Pupil Premium learners to achieve way beyond expectation. How do learners n receipt of Pupil Premium do in your school or academy?
- Are certain ethnic groups make less than expected progress?
- How are Looked-after Children (LAC) & Children in Need are groups performing? These learners are particularly vulnerable.
- How do learners with SEND perform?