This section of the website focuses in depth on three key strategic issues for leaders and managers - follow the links to sub-pages for further information:

Delivering GCSE maths and English on a greatly increased scale has provided a major challenge to almost all providers. To meet this significant challenge a whole organisational strategy is essential. In 2015, the GCSE Maths and English Strategic Guide was published to help leaders and managers implement a strategic approach. The guide is accompanied by a Health Check Tool and a series of case studies of effective practice. Further details can be found on the Strategic Guide page.

Important issues for senior leaders to consider include:

  • Placing maths and English at the centre of the curriculum offer - timetabling it before vocational subjects
  • Positive promotion of maths and English in marketing materials and during IAG (rather than trying to hide it)
  • Managing expectations - of learners, staff, parents and employers
  • Using data to project the number of learners who will be required to study GCSEs
  • Ensuring staff capacity to deliver GCSEs to those required to study them
  • Providing sustained staff development opportunities
  • Planning the maths and English curriculum around learner needs - taking account of past experiences
  • Ways of motivating and re-engaging learners to study maths and English
  • Examination arrangements to cope with the large increase in GCSE entries
  • Robust quality assurance arrangements to monitor the effectiveness of teaching and wider practices

Senior leaders will also need to think about their reports to governing boards on the above items. It may be helpful to view the types of challenging questions governing boards may ask. The Walsall College case study identifies effective ways of working with governing boards. It highlights the importance of presenting a maths and English monitoring report to governing boards and having a link maths and English governor (or trustee).