The Head Teacher from Feversham Academy, Naveed Idrees will share his secrets of success and his passion for the teaching profession with Newly-Qualified Teachers (NQTs) from Leeds Beckett University at a special event held at Headingley campus. He believes in the importance of arts and culture as a bedrock for educational success and personal wellbeing. By placing music and arts at the heart of the curriculum, the school has achieved outstanding success. The school’s approach to the curriculum has caught national and global interest including Norway, Sweden, Australia and New Zealand.

The fifth annual conference for Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) takes place on Friday 14th February 2020, with Leeds Beckett Initial Teacher Education (ITE) graduates from the last two years gathering from across the region and beyond at the University’s Headingley Campus.

Naveed Idrees, head teacher from Feversham Primary Academy is the current winner of the TES award for ‘Head Teacher of the Year 2019’. Having studied Law, he stumbled by default out of the courtroom and into the classroom - around two decades ago! Since then he has forged his passion for education by design. He will deliver his keynote presentation on the theme of ’Curriculum Challenge’ by placing a huge emphasis on music, arts and the outdoors in the curriculum. Naveed’s work in this area has received national and international recognition.

Professor Damien Page, Dean of the School said: ‘we know the impact that highly skilled and highly motivated graduates can make to the teaching profession and so we’re investing in our support for NQTs. We don’t just want them to be good teachers, we want them to make a real difference in the lives of children’.

Yasmin Valli – NQT Coordinator and conference organiser based in the Carnegie School of Education at Leeds Beckett explained: “This year the conference is based around the theme of ‘Curriculum Challenge!’ Professional Development Conference for NQTs and RQTs. The aim is to continue to support our NQTs in their professional development and help them to progress in their career as teachers thereby, helping to tackle issues of teacher retention.

“We are thrilled by the response shown towards the conference. The conference provides a platform for NQTs to continue to develop their confidence and expertise for the benefit of all the pupils they teach. NQTs do need to be challenged but they must also be nurtured and supported in their first year in the classroom.”

Speaking ahead of his keynote, Naveed Idrees commented: “I believe teaching is about building people within secure and nurturing relationships. My approach centres around engaging with people as humans possessing a heart and soul: laying the foundations of positive mental health. I am disinclined to dabble in mechanical approaches to teaching and treating children as robots. Teaching is the greatest and most rewarding job in the world”.

Naveed believes that every member of staff is a leader, and promotes peer led school improvement approaches. This has resulted in schools like Feversham with a diverse EAL population of 99%, in an area of significant deprivation to move from being in the bottom quartile to the top 2 % of schools nationally. The school has a strong ethos and believes in life chances and inspiration to motivate learning.

The school choir from Feversham Primary Academy will greet the NQTs at the conference. NQTs will then attend a variety of training workshops based around the key themes identified by NQTs and Ofsted as priorities for further training, including: Assessing pupil progress; Teaching and learning in diverse classrooms – using Arts and Music to connect with learning; Behaviour - inclusion/exclusion; Using ICT to create a stimulating learning environment; Mental Health; Autism; Working with Parents; Relationship and sex education (RSE) and Team Building. Throughout the day there will be a focus on the impact of research on learning and teaching.

Delivering the workshops will be Leeds Beckett education academics alongside external speakers, including: Yasmin Valli, Claire Birkenshaw, Aneesa Naz, Jonathan Glazzard, Mandy Pierlejewsk, Ruth Gilmore, Jimmy Rotherham from Feversham Academy, Elizabeth Armstrong, Adam Chase, teacher  from Bury, Simon Gallacher from CSPTSA, Tony Phillips from the Wakefield PRU.

We are all looking forward to this exciting event.

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