Case Studies

Canons High School Staff Testimonials

 “At Canons I feel encouraged to be creative in my teaching, to try new things and take risks. I'm supported in my role as a teacher and encouraged to push myself to be the best I can be. The atmosphere around the school is positive and this is a happy place to work. I feel I have had lots of opportunities to advance my career and I landed on my feet the day I got a job here!”

“The best thing about Canons High School for me is that every day you feel like you are having a positive impact on the people in the community, whether that is students, staff, parents or people who live close by.  I have really enjoyed working here and continue to do so.”

“What I love about Canons is that whether you are happy or feeling down, someone always notices. People think that this is about adults. The kids are good at it as well. This is the reason that Canons is the best school to work in.”

“I have worked at Canons for 10 years now and can truly say that it a school that not only nurtures and looks after their students but also all its STAFF MEMBERS.”

“Support staff at every school know that we are essential to keep things running smoothly and that without the technicians, office staff etc. the whole place would grind to a halt. The great thing about Canons is that the teachers know it too, and treat us accordingly.”

 “The students shout and run down the corridor.  Then they stop and hold the door open for you!  They say it’s unfair in front of their classmates and then they find you later on their own to apologise.  There are disagreements between staff and then we all sit together in the staffroom to eat lunch.  You have a terrible journey to work a full timetable day and detention after school, then during period 5 someone comes into class and gives you a chocolate.  You always end up smiling when you work at Canons.”

“Canons not only nurtures the well-being of its students but its staff as well.  I felt respected, valued, challenged and supported throughout my time here.  Staff here recognise the qualities in you that maybe you haven’t recognised yourself. It’s only at Canons that I have been able to grow both professionally and personally (in a career span of 17 years and 3 different schools).  I always proudly mention that  I’m “home grown”  (a former Canons student) and feel privileged and to be working here as a teacher (we have quite a few of us who have “come home”).  The concept of a work family really does exist at Canons.”

“As a part time working parent Canons has been a hugely supportive and progressive place to work. There have been lots of opportunities for me to develop professionally and my status as a part time teacher does not seem to be hindered by that. I have also found that because it is such a supportive place to work I have been able to balance my new responsibilities well with my reduced work hours. I feel valued.”

“Canons is a vibrant, inspiring multicultural school which whole heartedly supports and challenges students and staff to do their best.”

“I have worked within the education sector for 15 years now and have done a variety of different roles. Working with children and young people has always been a passion of mine and I feel that, as much as I have made a difference to the young people I have worked with, they have changed my life and I have seen myself grow. I’ve moved around a lot in my time, purely because I never found anywhere that held the same school of thought as I did. It was my fear that everything from youth work to teaching had become numbers orientated, that it was the data that mattered most and not the lives of the young people we were working with. I believe in a holistic approach to education. That there is more than academics to a young person and it is our job as educators to bring out the best in every young person that we work with, even if it isn’t through education that this happens.

Canons High has made me see that there are places that believe in the young people as much as I do. It feels like home! The staff that they employ feel like family. The school encourage the staff to go above and beyond to achieve, and as staff we do this happily. We work with young people through their good and bad, students and their families recognise this and it is amazing to see. I feel as a school we take on board as much as we can to give our students and wider community all that we can. It’s the first time that I have ever wanted to stay somewhere because they look at the holistic approach to education and because I feel comfortable and supported. It is the first time I have ever felt that a school not only cares about what they need to care about to do the job, but also care about its students and their families. I don’t think that this will change! I plan to stay here for as long as I can! I also believe that it is why quite a few members of staff have started their careers here and are now finishing their careers here too.”

Canons has done a lot of work looking at career pathways for all staff linked to a clear emphasis on professional learning for staff development, but also as a key to driving student attainment. In response to feedback from staff, following an Inset in 2014, work was undertaken to look at ways in which opportunities could be developed at all levels across the school, for all staff.

One aspect of this change was to look at leadership roles and create some new roles. One of these roles was what we termed a 'Grassroots Leader', with any member of staff with appropriate leadership skills and experience, from across the school able to apply for the posts. These posts are designed to be extremely self-rewarding and  place the postholders at the very leading edge of school, not to mention national, policy and practice. The professional development of the successful candidates is as good as it is possible to offer, not least of all with the opportunity to work, as equals, with members of the senior leadership team and to support and involve other colleagues in helping to make this outstanding school truly great. 

The roles provide the successful candidates with excellent preparation for career development. Training and support is provided in order for post holders to flourish and develop the range of leadership skills that go with being a successful member of the leadership team at Canons. The first appointments were made for September 2015 and we are just into a new cycle.Of the intial group of 8 'leaders', 6 have secured promtion within this academic year.

Another role created was as an 'Associate Senior Leader' role, given the chance to become a member of the senior leadership term for a year, again these posts are available for all staff.

As well as leadership roles, we are pleased to be able to offer real opportunities to our own students. In this academic year, that has just finished we have been able to offer opportunities to;

-  Aakash Galaiya, who after finishing 6th form with excellent results wanted to take a year out before heading to Medical School. We were able to offer him a role as Science Technician, as well as time to enable him to access voluntary work in a health care environment, to add to his skills for his new career. He has now left us to take up his place at Medical School.

- Prezemyslwa Milczarki; who after completing his Engineering course at Canons in 6th form, wanted a year out to consider his career options and joined his former teachers to bring his experiencer of the course and the school, as a Technician supporting in the Design and Technology Department. His help and support, especially for Engineering students, has been invaluable. He added to his skills by working as a member of the team delivering our Summer Sports Camp to Year 6, 7 and 8 students for 2 weeks in the Summer holidays (as did Aakash).

So if you are looking for an opportunity to make a contribution, develop your skills and your career, then keep an eye out for vacancies here. Alternatively just contact us and we would be happy to discuss any roles that might be likely to become available.