Earlier this week, we launched our Manifesto for North East Education – a series of 10 key recommendations for politicians and policy makers from North East schools. This has been developed in the run up to the general election to ensure that education in the North East is not forgotten while politicians focus on national issues from Brexit to the NHS.
We have developed these recommendations over the last few months, in conjunction with our Partner Schools and hundreds of other North East Head Teachers, alongside expert educationalists and academics with a deep knowledge of the issues of the North East. The recommendations call for national politicians to recognise the regional context of the North East, and to ensure that our specific circumstances and challenges are reflected in policy development, rather than using a ‘one size fits all’ approach that often just doesn’t ‘fit’ at all.
The Manifesto was well received by a host of figures in education and national organisations. We received press attention from TES (New heads in tough schools ‘should get Ofsted break’), and BBC Look North, helping us to amplify the voice of North East schools.
The Manifesto is only a starting point, and whatever the outcome of the General Election, we intend to develop this work going forwards. To extend the conversation we will be holding a series of round-table events starting in the Spring term. These will be open to any CEO, Executive Head Teacher, Head Teacher or senior leader in the region, where you will be joined by experts in relevant fields to help us develop detailed publications around each recommendation, which we will use to influence Ministers, local politicians, civil servants, academics and other policymakers.
If you would like to attend one of these events you can register your interest online.
Chris Zarraga, Director of Schools North East, said ‘It is vital, going into the election and beyond, that national politics recognises the specific context of the North East region and does not allow this to continue to fall off the radar. For too long the specific circumstances of our region have not been adequately understood or reflected in policy.’
‘This Manifesto is the start of an ongoing piece of work to ensure that education policy and its impact on the North East is based on solid foundations, and moreover that specific policies work to resolve the challenges our region actually faces rather than the ones policymakers sometimes assume it does.’