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Swiss Cottage School Newsletter 31.01.2020

This week's newsletter is highlighting four international delegations the school hosted. The groups were in London for the World Education Form and the Educational Technology Conference 'BETT'. The delegations included teachers, school leaders, university professors, researchers, architects, and government policy groups. They joined us at Swiss Cottage School to understand the national approach to inclusion and how we personalise that for pupils with complex profiles through our curriculum, teaching, and assessment approaches.

"Your solutions to working with the community in special needs education is very remarkable. We are learning from you." - Dr Matthew O Prempah, Minister of Education

The Minister of Education for Ghana and Permanent Secretary of Education for Ghana brought three of their national policy leaders for special educational needs and disabilities. They explored policy into action with a focus on our 21st century curriculum, teaching, and the assessment systems that measure holistic progress. They explored our multi-agency work with therapists and professionals. They observed lessons across the Lower and Upper School. The group also learned about our Teacher Training and Leadership Training programmes. They were very impressed with the confidence and character of the pupils. 

"The role of the teacher is deeply respected at your school. We are very keen to work with you on a research project about autism and robotics so that your teachers can shape our observations and plans." -French Neuroscience Researcher

We hosted a group from France for the British Council and French Embassy. They explored our digital vision and commitment to technology and research. The group of government leaders, university professors, and researchers were very interested in our Professional Learning Community model to bring the teacher perspective into research. The group observed classes across the Early Years Foundation Stage to understand our communication systems and use of technology for communication. They were very impressed with the role of 'Evidence for Learning' as an assessment system that shares the journey of learning.

"Amazed by the fantastic work of the staff at Swiss Cottage School in London dedicated to students with complex special needs. An example of giving all kids the opportunity to thrive no matter how big the challenge." -Jaime Saavedra, Global Director for Education

The Global Director for Education for the World Bank Group visited the school with key leaders from his team in Washington DC for an international priority around special educational needs education and access to meaningful curriculum. They explored the national policy for special educational needs and disability with an interest on how families are involved in the process. The group observed classes in lower school with a deep interest in Eye Gaze technology for communication. They then went to the Upper School to observe the EmployMEnt Pathway completing their weekly online ordering. We were proud to share the importance of parent partnership and examples such as the Family Learning Weeks and Family Inclusion Team workshops.

"This such a forward thinking school building design. The creativity of your teachers to fully use the space is incredible. Every classroom is unique and different which is so inspiring for the personalised learning." -Forum Bygga Skola

A group of school leaders, teachers, and architects from Sweden requested a visit to understand how the building design supports our curriculum. They visited classrooms, sensory rooms, and outdoor learning areas to understand our curriculum vision. The group also had a keen interest in how we support pupil independence and communication through the classroom environments. They also explored the online 'Evidence for Learning' journal. Teachers explained the role of 'Evidence for Learning' in celebrating every small step of success and how it is shared with families.

Other News

Parent Council Meeting: This is a reminder to all parent representatives that the next Parent Council meeting will be taking place on 7th February 2020 from 10.00am to 11.30am. It is important that all classes are represented at the meeting. If you are unable to attend, please remember to let reception know which parent/carer from your class will be joining the meeting to replace you.

Anna Kennedy Online (AKO) Autism Expo event at Brunel University London on Saturday 28th March: AKO is a charity dedicated to raising awareness of autism to help support and inform families and carers. The tickets are £10 per adult and all children under 16 are free. For more information please use this link: https://akoautismexpo.co.uk/

Term Dates Reminder:

Spring Term 2020: Monday 6th January to Friday 3rd April 2020

Half Term: Monday 17th February to Friday 21st February 2020

Spring Holiday: Monday 6th April to Friday 17th April 2020

Useful Information

Other Important Dates:

- Week of 10th February 2020: Family Learning Week

- 5th March 2020: World Book Day