Education Development Trust has worked in Wales in differing capacities for more than 25 years. From working with every school in the country to offering specialist services to some of the most vulnerable children; and from collaborating with the government on policy to helping to make research part of the national agenda.
Through include, acquired by the then-CfBT in 1999, we worked across South Wales to provide services to combat social exclusion among young people. Our carefully designed services were aimed at high-risk groups: those who had been excluded, or who were at risk of exclusion, those who had a range of behavioural difficulties, children in care and those with special educational needs (SEN) as well as NEETs or those at risk of being NEET (young people not in education, employment or training). We provided an alternative pathway specialising in vocational education, training and basic skills. Tailored programmes, working with complementary agencies, addressed multiple issues including low literacy and behaviour as well as substance misuse.
With leadership a key driver in education reform, Education Development Trust worked alongside the Welsh government to define and design a new educational leadership academy in Wales launched in 2018. As well as supporting with the definition of the overarching vision and purpose, we offered quality assurance and advised on appropriate governance and funding models. The academy sits independently of government and works collaboratively across the system to secure, nurture and inspire leaders now and in the future. It will play a key role in embedding the culture and principles of the self-improving system which is something that we are passionate about and committed to at Education Development Trust.
Since 2013, we have been working with more than half of Wales’ primary and secondary schools to deepen pupils’ understanding of global issues through the Global Learning Programme Wales. Using our expertise in embedding national policy initiatives, we have adopted a successful cluster model approach and we work alongside our lead schools offering 1:1 tailored mentoring with bilingual experts and highly targeted effective training. All of our work is supported by an extensive and comprehensive library of bilingual supporting materials and resources.
In 2017, Education Development Trust was appointed pan-regional think-tank partner for Wales. We worked collaboratively with the four Welsh education consortia to support them in the development and coordination of research activities across the country. We developed world-class research commissioning and management systems as well as key partnerships to ensure excellence, integrity and applicability of research. Our ultimate objective was to ensure that any research activity had impact in helping to achieve better quality education for more children and young people.
In 2015, Education Development Trust (then CfBT Education Trust) conducted the first national survey of foreign language teaching in Welsh schools – at a time of considerable change for education in Wales. The report charted the health of language teaching and learning in schools in Wales and was conducted in partnership with British Council.
From 2012 to 2015, we worked with and provided direct support to all schools and teachers in Wales in delivering the Literacy and Numeracy Framework, a high profile programme and the centrepiece of the Welsh government’s reform initiatives. Our team of partners worked with clusters of schools to help them embed the Literacy and Numeracy Framework into their curriculum planning and teaching and learning. We collaborated with headteachers to enable them to work with their staff to review progress made and to identify areas for development and plan for implementation at both institutional and classroom level.