Manorfield Primary School


Head Teacher Paul Jackson invited to deliver two talks on working creatively to transform schools and pioneering partnerships within the community at London conference


On April 4th Manorfield’s Head Teacher, Paul Jackson, delivered a talk at the Schools and Academies Show in London, where he offered information and guidance on the kinds of creative and ambitious work that has seen Manorfield’s percentage of pupils meeting expected standards in reading, writing and maths rocket past the national average over the past three years. Mr Jackson gave the talk on transforming schools under challenging circumstances on the second day of the School Improvement Summit and later took to the Main Stage to join a panel discussion on shaping the future of education through school partnerships.


The show, which saw 4,000 attendees across its two-day event in London on the 3rd and 4th of April, was designed to provide a platform for leaders and innovators in education to come together, share ideas and create a better future in the sector. Mr Jackson described it as ‘a privilege to be invited, and very exciting for Manorfield to be recognised as a leader in this area’.


During his talk, Manorfield’s Head explained how it had been ‘drive and determination underpinned by a strong vision’ that had led to Manorfield’s improvement, outlining the creative ways he’d chosen to meet the school’s ambitious aims. Mr Jackson made the distinction between ‘the right choice and the easy choice’, explaining how it is important to first recognise barriers, particularly concerning budget, in order to overcome them.


‘If we let budget drive the vision, we’ll be limited, but if we set the vision and then strive to find the budget to meet it, we are going to create exciting places to learn’, Mr Jackson explained.


The afternoon’s panel discussion saw Paul advocating the importance of various kinds of partnership in order to support these kinds of creative and ambitious school visions, referencing the groundbreaking example pioneered between Eton College and Gallions Primary School, where Mr Jackson was also Head Teacher. He described these kinds of links between the state and private sector as ‘immensely valuable’, going on to detail how creative thinking can push links between schools and their community as well as with charities and the corporate sector. Manorfield are currently working on a partnership with the independent Worth School in Sussex thanks to the relationship already forged between Mr Jackson and Stuart McPherson, once House Master at Penn House, Eton and now Head at Worth, illustrating how interpersonal relationships and shared ambitions can facilitate tremendous opportunities.


Manorfield Primary is by no means ready to rest on its laurels, however. When asked on his thoughts for the future, Mr Jackson made it clear he is determined to ‘continue to improve ourselves at Manorfield and to support others, too, in offering the very best education and provision to all children and families.’ The Head Teacher added that he is keen to expand Manorfield’s reach and scope for partnership: ‘we’d love to hear from schools who would like to come and visit us, and to explore partnerships and collaborations with other schools or organisations, both locally and further afield no matter where in the country or indeed the world they’re based’.


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