Week six- @ASTSupportaali

2 Weeks till half term… already!

Settle(d) in…

I think, I can, now, say, I have settled in! Is this because everybody knows who I am? (Because they don’t!) Or because I have a things to do list bigger than my desk? (It’s actually bigger than two desks!) Or because I am over the 1 hour drive that I am enduring every morning? (I still hate this drive!) NO!

I think its because I can now see what I am trying to do, where I am trying to go… I better do, have to present this to the Governors next week!


I posted a tweet last week asking whether adults are more hesitant to change compared to students/young people…

Screen Shot 2013-10-13 at 15.59.16

Reason why I asked this was because since I have started work, I have made lots of changes. Lots of small, what I would say superficial changes. Changes to improve communication, changes to improve consistency, changes to improve visibility. You know the type of changes that you don’t see when proof reading your piece of writing over and over.

However, the above tweet resonated with me. All the changes I have installed so far, I carefully ensured were not changes for change sake. To be an effective leader- I think this is vital.

However- no matter how the changes may look like to me, not everyone will see them in the same way- so being understanding of the different effect on different individuals is an important skill to have. I think I read people well, I can read emotions, I can read thoughts… I have been cutting back on humour a little and listening more now. But sometimes, it is totally OK to just let somebody VENT… let them say what they think and then explain, make them understand. If the person leaves with a smile, then I KNOW I have done my job well.


SLT meetings:

SLT briefings are every Tuesday/Weds/Friday and SLT meetings are every Tuesday after school, along with P3s on Weds- WKb! So we meet as a team regularly! I have found these really, really useful. Just to sit back and see how other SLT members interact, get their points across, think about things, react, persuade and of course ‘argue!’

I have grown more and more confident in my involvement in these meetings and now do not think twice or worry about whether my opinion will be ‘valid’ or ‘respected’ – I guess initially I was nervous and worried. However, that has quickly disappeared!

Being able to read people here is always a great trait!


Who are you?

One thing I noticed on Friday after school at a Charity event organised by Sixth formers was, NOT ALL students know who I am.

I was angered by the fact that a couple of sixth formers thought, they should only listen to me if I WAS in fact an AHT… despite me explaining they should be respecting all teachers! (They didn’t even believe I was a teacher!!) This was quickly resolved by me speaking with them in front of their Head of Sixth form. (To be fair, I was in casual clothes, jeans and a hoody- I guess the stereotype of what a teacher should look like, lives on and strong!!)

I mean in a school of 1,600 students it would be impossible for them all to know me already! Especially because I only teach a couple of classes and being an AHT linked to Inclusion some students have this horrid perception that I only deal with the ‘other’ kids.

I began to wonder- should I have been introduced to all the students in assemblies? This isn’t an easy task in our school! Vertical tutor groups mean assemblies are organised in Colleges- But then again, I could go and say hello in all the assemblies? Maybe I will this week…?

However, I also think maybe it is my job for all students to get to know me, for me to get to know the students. I should make better use of my daily break duty, spend more time on the late gate, wonder around more in different places during lunch. But still, will I be able to be seen by 1,600 students! Anyhow…something to ponder…


Things to look forward to this week…

  • Interviews- this time for my team/dept.
  • Eid this wednesday!
  • And of course Strike day on Thursday! I guess next weeks post will be interesting!


Thanks for reading, any comments, any feedback please do leave a comment or tweet me!




  1. Thanks for this – interesting to read of the different stages of your journey!

    A couple of things struck me – re: the (physical!) journey to and from work – I had an hour’s drive each way for the five years I was a deputy head and actually found it quite helpful ‘thinking time’ – are you travelling on your own? Often when we’re doing a very busy job, time for reflection is at a premium, and for me, two hours a day to think (and, coming home, process the events of the day) was a bonus. Does it help to think of it in those terms?

    Secondly, getting to know pupils – it does take time, especially in a school that size, but you just take advantage of every opportunity (eg through extra-curricular activity) to interact with as many pupils as you can and to get known. Also re: assemblies – actually TAKING assemblies from time to time with different sections of the school will help them to get to know you, and also to get to know more about what you believe/stand for – through our assembly messages we do communicate our core values/sense of moral purpose (to the staff as well as to the students). So, although it can be nerve-wracking, it’s a really good channel of communication I think.

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