CfEY at the Schools and Academies Show Birmingham


13th December 2023

The CfEY team were delighted to attend this year’s November Schools and Academies Show at the NEC, Birmingham. Joe took part in a panel on the main stage, entitled Turning The Tide: The Role of Area Based Partnerships in a School-Led System, which was chaired by Stephen MoralesCEO of the Institute of School Business Leadership, and also included: Leora Cruddas, Chief Executive Officer of the Confederation of Schools Trust; Dr. Belinda Hughes, Lecturer at the University of Manchester; and Dr Paul Armstrong, Reader at the Manchester Institute of Education. The panel discussed how schools can work together in a fragmented educational landscape, the importance of contextually informed decision-making and locally driven action, and the future of area-based cooperation. Joe drew on CfEY’s recent work on Area Based Education Partnerships, including the creation of our map of local school collaborations. Alix chaired a panel discussion on The Evolution of Academy Trusts, alongside Anita Notta, Executive Principal & CEO of Khalsa Academies Trust; Tom Campbell, Chief Executive of E-ACT; Rowena Hackwood; Chief Executive Officer of Astrea Academy Trust; and David Withey, Chief Executive of the Education Skills and Funding Agency. This discussion explored how to prepare academy trusts for the next phase of the academisation agenda, how to encourage supportive and collaborative relationships across the current education landscape, and trust leaders’ experiences of the Trust Quality Descriptors and the Academies Regulatory and Commissioning Review. Alix and Anamaria presented a session on Preventative Approaches To Supporting the Wellbeing of The School Community, drawing on recent research projects such as our Catalysing Social Emotional Learning in Schools in England report in partnership with Impetus and our review of Mental health professional development for school-based staff, with Minds Ahead. This session covered approaches to social emotional learning, as well as how mental health-related training can help to prepare and support school communities to manage mental health and wellbeing.