DYT have recently partnered up with Paignton Academy, who are taking part in our Drive for Literacy programme. This month, Kelly and Kenny ventured down to Devon to meet the team and start the audit process – check out Kelly’s blog on the new partnership below!

As I drove home after my first visit to Paignton Academy, my head span with all the names of the staff I would get to know over the next few visits. It was a good omen that the day’s visit started with a beautiful sunrise and a meeting with the Headteacher, Mark Smith and Deputy Head Tim Willcocks. We always complete the audits as a pair and joining me for this visit was Kenny. His insight into the way schools approach SEND was invaluable, and two heads are definitely better than one!

The school is split over two sites that are on opposite hills overlooking Paignton. The vision and commitment to improve literacy throughout the school was evident from teachers on both sites, as was the enthusiasm and good attitude to learning of their pupils.

The day was packed with tours and visits to classrooms including French, Maths, English, Geography and Science. The learners were engaged and enjoying their lessons, and the work on teaching vocabulary was well underway as was the use of knowledge organisers. How Paignton Academy uses these could be something to learn from for our other schools.

Lunch was in their new dining room which was being well used and buzzing with excitement.

I’m looking forward to my return visit in the new year and getting started on delivering Drive for Literacy by the seaside!