It has been a very different and busy year.
A year ago, all Subjects Associations stepped up magnificently to provide resources to help teachers and pupils with homeworking and the CfSA created a landing page to make access to all these simple, which was shared with government and other organisations and very well received. Thank you all for your support of this.
We wrote to the DfE in March 2020 and shared a plan, with a request for funding from them, to create a sustainable resource for this role, but the DfE declined at the end of May and instead put considerably more money than we had asked for into the Oak Academy.
The BBC approached us and number of members invested huge resource, for free, in supporting BBC Bite-size. Other members develop materials for the Oak Academy in order to secure quality. All those involved deserve immense credit for the work done.
In April 2020 we launched the CFSA Directory, with a press release. We wrote to Education Ministries in England, Scotland, Wales and Norther Ireland with the Directory. We know DfE use it internally and each nation has shared it with officials. We also sent it to Ofsted, who thanked us and shared it with the inspectorate. We know of schools who have had Subject Associations recommended to them by Ofsted. We are looking to update the directory this year.
In June 2020 we wrote to the DfE and offered to help develop a plan to support teacher who are teaching outside their subject expertise, or who need help with SEND, diversity and environmental awareness. We await a response.
On the 24th June 2020, the CfSA hosted a forum to discuss options for developing a sustainable resource bank, particularly to support teachers at a time of a crisis. It was attended by a good number of members, other educational organizations, an international school and School Teaching Alliances.
1st July 2020, in response to the ITE inspection handbook consultation, we raised concerns about deep dives and lack of Subject Knowledge in some of the inspectorate. The letter was acknowledged 3 July and we met with Ofsted to discuss it in October 2020. They explained they had become aware of some need for staff development and were training their inspectors up in greater subject and pedagogical knowledge. Please let us know if you are seeing improvements or if issues remain.
The CfSA input to the spending review, particular flagging up the need for investment in teacher CPD and ITE.
29th September 2020, we wrote to the Secretary of State with our concerns about the mental health and wellbeing of teachers. We got a reply 19th March 2021, with a list of what they have done.
6th January 2021 we asked DfE for support with a proposed National Challenge Project for supporting pupil welfare. We await their response.
Lesley recently finally got to retire, having carried on with the secretarial work for quite some time after stepping down as a Director. We thank her immensely.
Very sadly we lost Aine. Our thoughts and prayers remain with her family.
Ruth and Becky have become new directors and quickly become valuable members of the group. Matt has taken on the role of secretary and membership officer. He is not a Director, as we have separated this out. He is doing a great job already.
We still have vacancies for two directors should anyone wish to become more involved with the CfSA Board. We are also seeking nominations for vice-chair. Just let me know.
I would like to thank all members for their support and all Directors for the dedication they have to CfSA and the hard work they do on a voluntarily basis.
Andy Connell, Chair CfSA.