After a long and rather uninspiring journey from Wakefield to Cardiff via Bristol Parkway I arrived mid evening in a wet but very lively city centre. Lots of xmas spirit ………….. and rain! Once I’d registered at my nearby hotel it was off to sample some of the local hostelries ahead of working with the NAHT Cymru Executive the following day. Having been to Cardiff on several previous NAHT occasions I was well versed on the best real ale haunts and pub grub! After a couple of pints it was back to the hotel with one for the road of course!
Next morning on arrival at the NAHT Cymru HQ I remembered the last time I was in the building was in 2009 when we were putting the final touches to the SATs boycott of 2010. Maybe a missed opportunity?
After a really warm welcome and once I was settled in with my presentation/discussion set up I was interested to sit in on some of the discussions of the Executive to hear issues that are so familiar to us across the border. The pressure on school leaders seems to be becoming more intense no matter where they are based! It was however heartening to hear the mention of children on several occasions which I don’t always hear on my travels!
Colleagues on the Cymru Executive certainly seemed very enthusiastic about Primary Futures possibilities as the aim of raising children’s aspirations is certainly a key focus across the country. Maybe also ticks the government box? During our discussion which went on longer than planned I also shared our developing ‘How to Use Volunteers’ curriculum resources http://www.inspiringthefuture.org/schools-and-colleges/primary-futures-primary-schools/ These have been developed by teachers to support teachers and will be added to on a regular basis. I also stressed that Primary Futures is school led ……………… by schools for the children!
The challenge now is for colleagues in Wales to plan and agree a timeline for the launch of Primary Futures in 2016. A series of targeted pilot events is one approach they will be considering along with developing their own webpages on our website focusing on Wales and developments across the country. Of course we need to register more schools and of course encourage more volunteers to join us. Promises to be an exciting journey. Watch this space!