At Witton Park, we place great importance on our teachers professional development, as better teachers will lead to a better experience and better outcomes for pupils. The process of action research, when matched with school and curriculum priorities, can be used to customise and enhance their development. Educational Research shows that if teachers investigate their own practice and establish an evidence based culture within their classrooms, this can have a higher impact their pupils and their progress.
Teachers at Witton Park have been conducting Action research projects since October 2018, supported by Phil Naylor from St Mary’s Research School in Blackpool. Each teacher chose an area of their practice to research and develop and has spent this academic year using current educational literature, planning, acting, observing and reflecting on the impact that this has had on their classes progress.
The results obtained have allowed teachers to decide whether that practice is worth developing further for them; their faculty; the whole school or if the practice just won’t work at all within our context as a school. The cycle ended in May of the school year, and the results from all the projects were displayed in order to share good practice and celebrate all teachers engagement in the process. A select few teachers kindly offered to share their experiences from throughout the process: their successes, their failures and even some unexpected results.
This year was just the starting point; from here, we will be able to determine which strategies work best to support our pupils and how we can embed them across the whole school, not just academically, but also in terms of developing their well-being, their resilience and the skills required to become lifelong learners.