Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Celebrating events - a job done well.

This really is a blog about education NOT football, it's just that I have visited two football grounds in two days. Tuesday was to the Derby County football ground for the Open Day of the Derby City BSF (Building Schools of the Future) programme.

Derby City has high expectations of the BSF programme and are, this year, the most improved local education authority in the UK. They are ambitious and eager for every student to be able to achieve excellence in outstanding learning environments.

Students from St. Benedicts School also performed extracts from a musical they had written themselves to the packed room of mainly dark suited men. They celebrating a wide range of talents and skills. Why shouldn't this type of performance be accredited as a form of project work? They had certainly worked extremely hard. with professional actors and developed a range of skills - you can't take a written test of this!

However, whilst waiting in the foyer, I couldn't help but notice a slightly tatty disposable coffee cup in the display cabinet against the crystal and silver ware. Surely no one left it there by accident? Then I noticed it was signed. I wrote a post two days ago (see below) about the poor celebration of sporting heroes just below, with their statues being placed outside car parks - this is the opposite!

Bemused I asked about the coffee cup -it turns out that in 2005, Derby player Paul Peschisolido kicked a ball towards goal during the match against local rivals Nottingham Forest. The ball was missing the goal until it hit this coffee cup which had been thrown onto the pitch and was deflected into the goal! It was allowed as no player had touched it. Although it looks rather out of place, no one can argue that they have not celebrated this strange story in style and continue to do so!

You cannot always predict what success looks like or what causes it.

How do we celebrate the many successes of our students if what they have done does not conform to the expectations we have or, as one Headteacher said to me, "within the celebration framework of the school" -what ever that is!

A lesson here in all sorts of ways! celebration, display, expectations, and so much more!


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