Challenge Partners

Challenge Partners

Our philosophy and strategy is informed by the following principles:

  1. Practitioner led and engaged: School practitioners started Challenge Partners and should be actively leading the system, making decisions, with a strong voice in national policy that drive pupil outcomes.

  2. Improving and sharing practice through collaboration: We facilitate best practice sharing through collaboration to reduce the variability and drive the best to grow new practice. Drawing upon effective practice, emerging innovation and productive academic research, to share and create knowledge to improve the quality of teaching and sustainable leadership. We invite and provide each other with both challenge and support to provide the best for our pupils.

  3. A national network of local partnerships: We develop collaborative communities at school, local, national, and international levels around Teaching School Alliances, Multi-Academy Trusts and other existing partnerships, and so create a model and voice for national reform.

  4. Accessing the best from beyond education: We look beyond the education sector and access business and other sectors for effective practice, advice and finance.

  5. Creating sustainable solutions: We seek sustainable school improvement and trust that if schools value it enough they will pay for it, and that by pooling resources, schools get more out than they put in.

Quotes from our Challenge Partners Review February 2018
The headteacher leads a knowledgeable and passionate team of senior leaders who focus clearly on providing pupils with the best possible educational experiences and opportunities. 
The headteacher is very effective and drives an inspiring school ethos and culture.  It is firmly focused upon learning and promoting pupils’ welfare and wellbeing.
Members of staff throughout the school share the school leaders’ passion and all adults are committed to making a positive difference to the lives of the pupils at Severnbanks.
Staff and middle leaders focus well on the key priorities in the school development plan and the school is rapidly becoming a thinking school through such strategies as Philosophy for Children and Growth Mindsets.

Very positive changes have been made in the EYFS. The school’s new phonics strategy has resulted in pupils not only learning phonics but also developing learning skills. The layout of the ‘in the moment’ lessons is ensuring that play is a constructive and active learning experience. 


The headteacher has developed a group of dynamic and enthusiastic middle leaders, who make a positive contribution to overall school development.  Middle leaders demonstrate that they are an integral part of the school and they feel a real sense of ownership as they manage school strategies. They receive strong support from senior leaders. 


The school’s leadership team has created a ‘grow your own’ approach to finding the next group of leaders and this has proved very successful with a significant number of the current senior leaders having developed along this path.


Pupils have positive attitudes to learning. They engage with the tasks set and enjoy their learning.  Classroom routines are well established, so that there is no time wasted in managing behaviour.  Working relationships between pupils and staff are very good.


The staff share a commitment and passion to ensure that no child is overlooked. Each child is treated as an individual and their needs are addressed by staff going that extra mile to ensure success.