Colton Hills Community School recently introduced bold new values and an ambitious improvement programme. Supported by The Little Survey Company, they explored the staff views of these recent changes and what more they can do to ensure everyone thrives.
"The Highest Quality Learning Experience for Every Child, Every Lesson, Every Day."
Colton Hills Community School is raising the bar. They are challenging educational and social disadvantages on a journey to maximise academic attainment for every child, in every lesson, every day, with no excuses or barriers. They are enhancing existing good practice and building a culture of excellence where every child receives the highest quality learning experience.
These improvements are possible thanks to the knowledge, skills and hard work of the fantastic Colton Hills staff. The Leadership Team were conscious of the well-being implications of the fast-paced change programme and wanted to hear views from across the school about how the new core values are working in practice.
The Little Survey Company developed a bespoke survey exploring the staff experience and views of the new core values and gathered valuable insights into what is working well, where improvements are needed and what matters most to the staff. All responses were anonymous, and the survey included plenty of free-text questions to ensure feedback was open, candid and honest.
The survey highlighted many positive areas, including excellent pastoral care and student support, strong working relationships, teamwork and line management. Tangible improvements associated with the recent changes were already being felt in practice, with elevated student expectations and aspirations and improved student behaviour during lessons.
The feedback highlighted areas of further focus for the Senior Leadership Team and changes were implemented delivering an almost immediate, visible impact. Listening to this feedback had the dual benefit of advancing the journey towards the school's mission whilst enhancing staff engagement. For instance, even though diversity was identified as a significant strength, it was found that there is a desire to deliver a more inclusive calendar of celebrations and events, with enhanced forward-planning and broader staff involvement. Similarly, whilst some staff describe personal development as 'comprehensive', others would prefer to adopt a more individualised approach.
In addition to identifying quick, actionable changes, the survey helped to identify broader opportunities. Many comments raised the need for greater communication from the Leadership Team to achieve the desired culture of excellence and ensure every child receives the highest quality learning experience. Within the next stages of the improvement programme, there is huge potential to build staff engagement with the new values and strategy by strengthening communication and listening.
Due to the staff engaging with the survey, the Leadership Team has greater insight into what is working well, what needs to improve and what is most important. Tapping into the wealth of knowledge and experience from within the organisation, they are able to make even further progress and improvement. By listening to the staff as they work through these substantial changes, the Leadership Team are paving the way for long-term success.
These results and subsequent action plans show admirable commitment by the staff of Colton Hills. We applaud their collective desire to provide the best environment for teaching and learning for all students. We are inspired by their drive to challenge educational and social disadvantages so that everyone thrives. From working with them, it's evident that students come first. The students of Colton Hills are taught to recognise the dignity and worth of every individual and given every opportunity to achieve excellence.
Colton Hills Community School is a non-selective, mixed community school providing secondary and sixth form education to approximately 1000 students with close to 140 staff. It champions diversity, respect, integrity, excellence and participation. The school was awarded ‘good’ by Ofsted in 2018 and is striving for excellence both for and with its students.