The Beckfoot Trust is an organisation that links a group of local Bradford schools together so that they can collectively improve the life chances for young people within their schools.
We are optimists. We believe in the potential of every young person. Our responsibility is to prepare them for adult life. To ensure that they leave school being able to communicate effectively, are knowledgeable and expert learners, are genuine committed community contributors and are future ready. No child is left behind.
We put our staff first. They are our greatest asset. Our success is sustained by recruiting and retaining talented people. Four key features of our people and talent strategy is to secure effective leadership of people, investment in professional development for every colleague, managing workload and well being and always respecting national conditions of employment. Please read our Workload and Well Being Charter, developed by colleagues within the Trust.
We respect the uniqueness of all our schools. Our communities identify with their school first, the Trust second. We never forget that. Each school has a distinct character which we love. Uniqueness is important because leadership and personal accountability are founded on ownership and self direction. If there is no variation in how we work, there will be no opportunity for us to learn from different practices. Uniqueness encourages trust, creativity and accelerates improvement.
We are though absolutely clear on why we have come together as a formal school to school partnership. Collaborative practice runs through the spine of the Trust. To accelerate improvement in each school we align together to identify the best ideas to take back to our schools. The role of the Trust is to manage this collaborative enterprise and to ensure the great innovative ideas generated collectively are fully implemented within our schools. We all benefit from the collective Beckfoot resources, brand, shared governance and reputation.
Our mission is a challenging one. Many of our schools are located in areas where there is significantly higher levels of deprivation than that seen nationally. In some instances our schools joined the Trust with a legacy of sustained underperformance and community mistrust. Breaking that cycle of deprivation is what drives us forward. We are not into mediocrity. We have a positive relationship with our local authority. They place children in our schools and allow us a joined up support strategy with other critical agencies.
My final point is to say something about collective efficacy. We can only make magic happen if we create a culture across our schools where every colleague working for us understands their duty to work in partnership. Where we genuinely collaborate as equal partners across special, primary and secondary settings. Where every one of us wants to give more than we receive. Colleagues with the maturity to recognise that there may be a better idea and it can come from any setting. Most critical of all, where we all know that collectively we are only as strong as our weakest.
That cultural buy in is above all else what makes me proud to be a part of this family of schools.