Recently I had the chance to speak at the Sunday Times Education Festival and used this opportunity to consider some of the questions that I think we need to be reflecting on in order to take our field of education forward. They covered some of the subjects that I have blogged about over the past few months and can be summarised as follows:
How do we evaluate the success of a Special School?
How do we contribute to the wider education community?
How do we build intellectual capacity?
How do we identify need?
How do we contribute to the wider debate?
This is not an exhaustive list by any stretch of the imagination and this became clear when listening to a talk by a teacher called Kris Boulton who discussed the codification of education and the raising of the status of the ‘profession’. He mentioned that he wants his peers to stop referring to him as ‘brave’ for becoming a teacher and instead look up to him for having been able to become a teacher. In reflecting on this it made be wonder what we would have to do in Special Education to stop people referring to us as ‘patient’ and begin to realise just how intellectually and emotionally demanding working in a Special School is.
Clearly there are a wide range of questions we should be considering in Special schools beyond those I have indicated here. So what so you think we need to answer to ensure, that as we move beyond the SEND reforms, the practice in Special Schools continues to develop?