Stacey Williams – Early Careers Leader
This is very much how I see my role as the Early Careers Leader at L.E.A.D. Equate. For the past three years, I have had the most fortunate opportunity to be involved in the career ladders progress of those that want to embark on, what in my opinion, is the most rewarding and complex career of them all – teaching.
My roles are entwined in that process. As the Deputy Hub Lead for the LTSA SCITT Programme, one of the partnerships that we work with for ITT, I have the fortunate opportunity of being there from day one – the moment a UCAS application lands in our inbox. Through a collaborative process with our Lincolnshire Hubs, I am there to invite potential trainees to interview and ensure that they are as well educated as can be to make an informed decision as to whether training to teach with L.E.A.D. Equate through a schools direct route is right for them. If so, I and endeavour to swiftly match them up swiftly with a partner school. Once this has been established and trainees are recruited for our hub, I work as the lead Programme Tutor for the programme. Through progress visits, I track the progress of trainee against the Teachers’ Standards alongside their allocated school-based mentor, ensuring that bespoke menus are in place to allow trainees to continually and consistently develop at their own pace. The mentors for our alliance schools, are always such dedicated professionals who remain committed to the development of our trainees and therefore, a pleasure to work with.
This has been core to the role for me from day one. The students I have had the pleasure of working with have all had their own trials and tribulations. Teaching has never, and will never be a linear line on a progress chart as it continually fluctuates. It has its ups and down, highs and lows. It is my role to be a constant, to ensure that our trainees believe in themselves and are offered opportunities to develop into well-rounded and well-informed practitioners. Through well-established relationships rooted in trust and mutual respect, I feel that here at L.E.A.D. Equate, with a dedicated team of Programme and Specialist Tutors, we confidently, passionately and effectively deliver on this for our trainees.
Through my role as Named Contact for the Appropriate Body, for L.E.A.D. Equate, I then follow this journey from ITT to NQT, both empathising and appreciating the journeys that our early career teachers (ECTs) have so far embarked on. Through this role, I am able to offer schools support, when it is needed, with regards to the process, and ensure compliance to the statutory framework, acting in the best interests for all parties involved. Alongside this, I am able to QA the systems and processes that schools have place, highlighting both best practice and suggestions for areas for development.
For 2020-2021, I am both excited to be part of the early expansion to the roll out of the ECF for one of the DfE’s nominated providers. This will aim to inform and strengthen L.E.A.D. Equate, in both our capacities as an Appropriate Body and a Teaching School, so that we can assist our alliance schools to make well-informed decisions as to whose provision to opt for when it becomes statutory in September 2021.
Quotes from positive folder emails/PDR reflections from L.E.A.D. Equate:
“I want to thank Equate and LTSA for the support I have had on my journey. Sandra has been incredible a fantastic support and has helped me believe in myself from day one. Anyone who has Sandra for their Programme Tutor next year is extremely lucky! Stacey has also been a massive support she is always very responsive to emails and has been able to provide a different view on a number of things I have approached her on for advice. The mock interview was very useful too! Bernadette, from LTSA, has been brilliant and I must admit seeing her face at training sessions on Fridays was very reassuring for all of us trainees she was so friendly, supportive and understanding. I will miss her and our training sessions. Another shout out to Leann whose training sessions were so worthwhile and she has such a wealth of knowledge regarding various subjects and teaching all key stages. Leann was so approachable and has been able to really help me with a number of things throughout my journey.”
“I would not be here, if it wasn’t for the support that I have received from L.E.A.D. Equate. The support that I have received from, you, Stacey has been so much appreciated. You have encouraged me to the best I could possibly be. The guidance you have provided me with has made me a much better practitioner and for that I am so appreciative. Susie, the guidance you provided me after my phonics observation enabled me to move forward and gain a better knowledge in my phonics teaching- and for that I will be forever grateful because at the start of my training, I did not have the best of relationships with phonics, but now, it is a subject that I love to teach due to the importance of the subject. Thank you for everything you do and for always going above and beyond for me! It’s very much appreciated.”
“I just wanted to take the time to let you know how much I appreciated you inviting me to accompany you on your programme tutor visit today, Stacey. I can honestly say that it has supported my understanding of the programme tutor role and will definitely impact on my own visits. Your approach to supporting the school based mentor and student, using professional dialogue, empathy and realistic expectations was honestly inspiring. I hope I can support school based mentors and students in the same way.”
“Thank you so much for having me accompany you on your visit to St Michael’s last week, Stacey. It is clear that you have built really effective professional relationships with the trainee and mentor. You knew the process well and arrived early, well before the start of school to have time to discuss progress with the mentor, to review files and to touch base with the trainee. You were skilful at putting both parties at ease to make the process as comfortable as possible. High quality professional discussions ensued and you gave guidance and support to the mentor to further the trainee’s progress.”
“The model at L.E.A.D. Equate is strong and means that you come with paperwork superbly organised and a strong insight into all of your trainees for moderation.”
“I prefer LTSA SCITT because I feel there is a better choice of schools (especially local to me). I feel I have had more support and help/guidance from yourself even before I was offered a place e.g with my general enquiries etc. I found the whole interview process alot smoother and kinder (I don’t mean easier). I feel the LTSA process takes in to consideration that we aren’t teachers and that your activities planned for the interview morning encourage us to show us at our best and not put us on the spot (expecting us to teach a whole class). I also liked how we chose our preference of school on the day and you sorted a place out. So I knew from the start that I had a place on the course in a certain school. Again thank you so much for all your help, you have played a big part in me choosing LTSA- L.E.A.D. Equate.”
“Thank you so much for everything yesterday. The whole experience from start to finish felt so professional, made me feel really at ease and made me feel I could really show who I am in the hope that that would be enough. I’m so grateful for the offer and so impressed with what I’ve seen from both L.E.A.D. Equate and my prospective training school so far and I’d love to hopefully spend some more time at the school soon so I can show what I can do in a full classroom environment. One final massive, massive thank you for taking a chance on me. I understand why I was a bit of a gamble but the feedback still has me lost for words and I will do everything I can to ensure the gamble was worth it. I really believe this is the industry I belong in and I can’t wait to get going.”