We were delighted to welcome visitors from GDST schools across the country last week as we hosted the annual two-day GDST Senior Leadership Team Conference on Thursday and Friday.

Sheffield Girls’ Head Nina Gunson talked passionately about how the school encourages pupils to show the same resilience, grit and determination as our trademark Sheffield steel, leading into the main discussions about improving the GDST as a whole.

The theme of this year’s conference, ‘Schools of and for the future’, revolved around striving for progress across the Trust and moving schools forward in a constantly changing world of education. Chief Executive of the GDST Cheryl Giovannoni introduced the conference on Thursday with an insightful update on the GDST strategy based on this ‘growth mindset’, with Director of Innovation and Learning Kevin Stannard outlining the challenges and focus for the remaining two days.

Sheffield Girls’ staff led workshops covering a range of useful topics: Cathy Walker, Director of Sixth Form and Carole Hall, Trust Consultant Teacher discussed creating effective links between employers and alumnae; Stephen Wiles, Head of E-Learning explored the ways in which technology is being used by staff, pupils and parents within school, including our use of the revolutionising online learning platform Firefly; and Mark Fuller, Trust Consultant Teacher, covered the new challenges following the implementation of linear A Levels.

More Sheffield workshops with fresh perspectives on aspects of education were run by Susan Good, School Consultant Teacher and Director of Outreach, Kathryn Boulton-Pratt, Senior Assistant Head Academic, Andree Read, Assistant Head Pastoral, and Sarah White, Deputy Head.

One attendee said, “It was a good opportunity to speak to colleagues in SLT from other schools and a nice chance to network, spending time together thinking about the future of education and how we can stay ahead of the game.”