School Support

CHM Teaching School Alliance is committed to help all schools improve by providing specialist information and opportunities to learn from the very best practice in our alliance. CHM can offer practitioners with a wide range of expertise who have proven experience of helping schools in category move to good.

School to school support is one of the most powerful ways of achieving improvement is through collaboration, with the best schools, settings and leaders supporting those that are more challenged. But it’s not just the school or centre receiving support that improves – providing support gives even the most accomplished teachers and leaders an opportunity to gain new ideas and improve their own practice. (DfE, 2012)

CHM Schools Expertise Database:
As well as participating in the nationwide initiatives (NLE, LLE and SLE), CHM partner schools also contribute to a local expertise database. This enables schools to publicise in-house expertise to a wider audience, and schools seeking a particular area of expertise can locate and contact a local match.

Specialist Leaders of Education (SLEs)
Specialist Leaders of Education (SLEs) are outstanding middle and senior leaders who have the skills to support individuals or teams in similar positions in other schools. They understand what outstanding leadership practice in their area of expertise looks like and are skilled in helping other leaders to achieve it in their own context. SLEs will work beyond their own schools, supporting individual or groups of leaders using a high-level coaching or facilitation approach that draws on their knowledge and expertise in their specialist area. This may involve a variety of support approaches, for example:

• one-to-one support
• facilitated group support
• use and analysis of data
• diagnosis of strengths and areas for development

The cost of providing SLE support is met either by the supported school or through intervention funding; depending upon the circumstances of the school.

CHM Teaching School is responsible for brokering support from a pool of SLEs within our area. Working with the schools and other partners in our alliance, we identify where SLE support is needed, which could be in any school in the alliance but is likely to be in those schools that are facing particular challenges. SLEs are offering a free initial consultation visit to schools to identify specific needs and draw up a targeted action plan for whatever support is needed.

Current CHM SLEs

Colin Smith:-
Creative and performing arts, theatre, media, film making/digital media
Supporting schools and colleges in making the creative arts accessible to young people with learning difficulties (especially Key Stage 3, 4 and Post 16)

Sam Proctor:-
Early years education, schema theory and developmentally appropriate practice (DAP).
Outdoor Studies, Experiential Learning or ‘learning by doing’, and how this supports the kinaesthetic learner – a style of learning most frequently exhibited by young children, boys and children with special educational needs.

Val Kennedy:-
Personal and Social Development, Lead Teacher for the Gloucestershire Healthy Living and Learning Team.  Support in all areas of SEND across all phases.  Supporting mainstream colleagues to adapt curriculum and resources to meet the needs of learners with SEND, as well as advising on programmes to engage hard toreach and disaffected pupils.


Local Leaders of Education (LLEs)
LLEs are successful Head Teachers who work alongside other heads, providing support and coaching, to drive forward improvements and build capacity to ensure that improvement can be sustained. The aim of the LLE programme is to improve pupil outcomes through partnership working between schools. The precise role of the LLE is flexible and based on context.

The cost of providing LLE support is met either by the supported school or through intervention funding; depending upon the circumstances of the school.

National Leaders of Education (NLEs)
NLEs are outstanding headteachers or principals whose schools are designated as National Support Schools. They use their skills and experience to support schools in challenging circumstances. In addition to leading their own schools, NLEs work to increase the leadership capacity of other schools to help raise standards. NLEs are assigned to a National College regional support associate. Their deployment is brokered in a variety of ways including via National College or the local authority. The cost of providing NLE support is met either by the supported school or through intervention funding; depending upon the circumstances of the school.

To join CHM and support local schools please click here for information: New Head Teacher Mentoring Programme and School Improvement Partner Programme  To download a NLE application form please click here.

To request HT Mentoring and/or the SIP Programme please click the links below for more information and contact the CHM Head Teachers: New Head Teacher Mentoring / School Improvement Partner Programme

Rachel Lane (NLE) Executive Headteacher Coney Hill & Finlay Community Primary Schools
01452 522734

Claire Murphy Lead for CHM Teaching School Alliance
01452 874083

Challenge & Support Group
This is a collaborative group of Special Schools who meet to provide support and a “critical friend”. Sub-groups include Early Years, KS4/5 and subject leaders meetings. Mainstream Schools and SENCOs are welcome to join the group for specific meetings or assistance with specific issues. Please contact us to discuss forthcoming meetings.

A service providing support for practitioners in all educational settings to help every child and young person with special educational needs and disabilities achieve their full potential. CHM Outreach Service offers the opportunity to consult with experienced teachers and support staff working in special schools in Gloucestershire; to receive tried and tested advice and guidance to enable the provision of the best possible education to pupils with SEND.


For more information please contact Nicki Davis at The Heart of the Forest School, or call 01594 822175.