Teaching School

Following our OfSTED inspection and our Principal’s designation as a National Leader of Education, Highlands has now been designated a National Teaching School.

Teaching schools are part of the government’s drive to give schools more freedom and to enable schools to take increasing responsibility for managing the education system. They provide coherent training and development for new and experienced teachers and leaders, which in turn supports school improvement and meets the needs and context of the local area.

Teaching schools are among the best schools in the country. They are often outstanding in their own performance and have a track record of working with others to raise standards for children and young people beyond their own school.

Teaching schools have six key roles. These are to:

  1. Play a greater role in recruiting and training new entrants to the profession (initial teacher training)
  2. Lead peer-to-peer professional and leadership development (continuing professional development)
  3. Identify and develop leadership potential (succession planning and talent management)
  4. Provide support for other schools
  5. Designate and broker SLEs
  6. Engage in research and development activity


Highlands is a strategic partner in the Hull Collaborative Teaching School Alliance – one of the largest alliances in the country.   Highlands leads on School to School Support and SLEs. 

Our role within the Teaching School means that we support school within and outside of the city, and have been very successful in doing so.  As a result we have a number of staff who have been designated as System Leaders:

Jan Drinkall (Principal)                                               National Leader of Education

Debbie Smith (Associate Principal)                            Specialist Leader of Education

Debbie James (Vice Principal)                                    Specialist Leader of Education

Sallie Mc Keown (Acting Vice Principal)                    Specialist Leader of Education

Helen Smith (Acting Vice Principal)                           Specialist Leader of Education

Claire Harris (Assistant Vice Principal)                      Specialist Leader of Education

Milica Saleh (Assistant Vice Principal)                       Specialist Leader of Education

Jayne White (SENCo)                                                Specialist Leader of Education

Katie Price                                                                  Specialist Leader of Education

Catherine Eastham                                                     Specialist Leader of Education

Melanie Dearing (School Business Manager)           Specialist Leader of Education


NCTL National Teaching School lock up (colour)