Mary Myatt - Supporting School Improvement

4th November 2019

Athena INSET Day, October 2019


Before we went on our break, we had a wonderful Athena INSET day. A chance for us all to consider curriculum and our professional development anew. Teaching staff enthusiasm for Mary Myatt’s input was very strong. Mary spoke passionately on a wide range of topics. Joyfully treading, and leaving, the ‘party line’ on occasions.

I particularly enjoyed her work on ‘respecting the dignity of individual subjects’. The demise of ‘topic’ is a good thing in my book, even though we may have to commit and develop subject leadership at primary schools in new (or revert to old) ways. She also spoke of the entitlement for all. Whether a disadvantaged child, an SEN pupil or a child with disabilities, we should not dumb down material or make it ‘easy’. The beauty in learning is that sometimes it is hard. It should stretch us.

Her thought experiment highlighted how we do enjoy a challenge and we do benefit from stretch; however, the conditions in which we achieve this are crucial. High challenge - low stress. Her example of the importance of selfassessment and re-call knowledge testing was illuminating. We do not need to collect marks to move learning forward!

Thank you to everyone who made our arrival into half term so beneficial. It is very powerful for the teachers to come together as a Trust and learn together. After all, we are better together.

Jack Mayhew, Executive Headteacher  Athena Schools Trust


MaryMyatt School Improvement Athena INSET Oct 2019