Education leaders from across York gathered virtually for the inaugural York Education Futures Conference on 16 November.
The aim of the event was to enable early years providers and schools to share best practice to ensure that all children in York are given the best chances for their future following the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Education leaders discussed a new shared learning strategy for the city, post COVID-19, called York Education Futures. This strategy will ensure that that every child is supported to maximise their individual potential.
The strategy focuses on five key themes. The themes were developed following the results of a citywide consultation with pupils, parents and professionals to understand their experiences of learning during the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.
The key themes are:
- ensuring that all pupils are fluent and confident readers, underpinned by strong communication skills
- ensuring that all pupils have every opportunity to make great progress, free from disruption
- barriers to learning and school attendance are removed
- children and staff in education settings are supported to manage their own wellbeing
- the quality of teaching is continuously improving in all educational settings, through strong collaboration and high quality professional development
The strategy has been developed by the York Future Education Task Group, which was set up by York Schools’ and Academies Board to support the city’s education recovery work.
Helen Winn, lead of York Future Education Task Group, and CEO of Hope Sentamu Learning Trust, said:
We know that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the lives of children and young people, as well as our early years and teaching teams.
"Working together to share best practice and problem solve will be the most powerful catalyst for change and will help to ensure that no child is left behind as we move forwards."
Cllr Ian Cuthbertson, the Executive Member for Children, Young People and Education at City of York Council, said:
A key factor in the quality of York’s childcare and education sectors is the willingness of early years providers and schools across the city to work together and share new ideas and best practice for the benefit of all our children and young people.
“The work of the York Education Futures Task Group has been invaluable in shaping this new post-lockdown strategy to support schools and early years providers. I’m really pleased that the conference provided an opportunity for providers across the city to discuss and learn from one another how we can help all our children and young people to move on from the disruption caused by the pandemic.”