Local Leaders of Education

Meet our LLEs

Nicholas Smith:

Headteacher at Burwell Village College Primary School

First and foremost I am a teacher who also happens to have become a head. Over the years I have been a head teacher in two small village schools and for the last eight head at  Burwell Village College -  a large and ever growing Cambridgeshire primary school. Headship is a great job and at times very challenging. I am under no illusions that success in headship is built upon the team around you and headship is not something you do alone.

The same thing that drove me as a teacher also drives me now: quality teaching has the power to transform lives. It must be relevant, engaging and challenging in order that  pupils grow both academically and socially. Over the years this has distilled in to three words:  Learning, Loving & Laughing.

Learning is key –what is taught and how it is taught. Quality first teaching is what makes a difference to all pupils and good practice in the classroom is where it is at. As LLE it is about adding value to the quality of teaching through Lesson Research Study, lesson observations, learning walks, work scrutiny. Someone once said that teachers already have 80% of the skills to make them at least good – and like everything else it needs practise and guidance.

Loving  - because pupils need to feel appreciated, valued and secure, and learn the necessary social skills. As LLE it is about offering support for behaviour management, learning attitudes (think Carol Dweck) and Safeguarding.

Laughing – because learning must be enjoyable.

As LLE I have no magic solutions, no quick fixes, no golden wand. The importance of headship is keeping your eye on what makes a difference to the quality of teaching. Headship is already a very challenging job with demands from Ofsted, Local Authority, School Improvement Partners, DfE, Governors. The role of the LLE  is not to add to the pressure or extra demands but to provide you with practical support which makes a difference - to  help schools identify what is already good and find ways to help improve the rest. 

 

Paul Belzar

Headteacher at Bottisham Primary School

I have the privilege of being in my eighth year as Headteacher at Bottisham Primary School; a growing school, with 275 children including a maintained nursery. I have 18 years teaching experience having previously been the Deputy Headteacher and Year 5/6 Team Leader at Cottenham Primary School and class teacher at Linton Heights Junior School. I am currently leading in assessment, mathematics, safeguarding and SMSC.

I strongly believe that all members of staff are entitled to a range of good quality professional development opportunities that starts with a thorough induction programme. I am passionate about schools collaborating together to get the best for our children and staff. I have supported colleagues with school self-evaluation procedures, data analysis, monitoring exercises and  staff development. I am particularly interested in supporting and mentoring new Headteachers and Leadership teams.