Chatsworth Schools has become the first independent schools’ group to launch its own consultancy practice, which it will use to formally continue its support of schools in difficult situations, particularly as a result of Covid-19.
The group’s new consultancy arm, Blenheim Schools, has worked with a number of independent schools over the last year and decided to formally launch its consultancy to offer the services more widely.
Blenheim Schools’ work includes staff audits identifying overstaffed and understaffed areas, audits of management and communication structures, long-term refurbishment and building maintenance plans, development of the senior leadership team, continuous professional development for staff, and health and safety reviews.
It also includes support for the head and bursar, security of investment for parents, access to a wider pool of expertise for children, and the opportunity for staff to share best practice and visit other schools.
In my experience schools experiencing difficulties often feel they are beyond hope or have left it too late to turn a situation around, but this is not necessarily the case – Anita Gleave, Chatsworth Schools and Blenheim Schools
Anita Gleave, founder and CEO of Chatsworth Schools and Blenheim Schools, has urged schools to ask for help, even if they believe it to be too late.
“In my experience schools experiencing difficulties often feel they are beyond hope or have left it too late to turn a situation around, but this is not necessarily the case,” said Gleave.
“I would urge any school that feels they could benefit from our assistance to contact Blenheim Schools for a strictly confidential initial discussion.”
Blenheim Schools recently worked with an independent school consisting of 200 pupils with a heavy bank loan, a £250k loss due to Covid expenses, a poor Ofsted report, no marketing, little IT, no recent staff training and a head approaching retirement.
After helping the leadership team and owner draw up a plan, targets and timeline, the school has been able to turn things around with black numbers on the balance sheet, growing pupil numbers and happy staff, parents and governors.
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