Part of our brief as a teaching school is to assess progress against the Maturity Model. Establishing a base line is much more difficult than it first appears, however. A discussion was begun at the first meeting of the steering group and it was agreed that each school would look at the model independently and then establish a joint progress statement.
It is important to distinguish between the progress of individual schools and the progress of the alliance since many of the schools in our alliance will have excellent practice in many areas but it is practice yet to be shared.
The assumption would be that as an alliance we are firmly in the ‘Beginning’ column, and I think this is largely true, but there are one or two areas where, because of the relationships between the schools involved, we are further on. I think, for example, it is fair to say that JPD is developing is across the alliance, partly due to the cross-phase trio work we have already done but partly due to the depth of discussion we have had around this topic. Similarly, in terms of High Social Capital, we are developing rather than beginning. There is a significant degree of trust among the partners and we are in the process of refining what each partner can add to the whole. A similar point can be made for Distributed Leadership.
In terms of ‘analytic investigation’, there are pockets of excellence in each of the schools and the similarities in the approaches of the various heads and SLT teams means that we are further along on this than in other areas, moving from developing to embedding.
Finally, the ‘alliance architecture’ is now established and gaining strength.
I suspect that the maturity model will become truly effective only when we are much further into the Teaching School project. At the moment, two months in, we are very much ‘beginning’.