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Letters Extra: What's the problem with NCSL?

It is good of George Black to remind us that this is the Christmas season and that the spirit of Ebenezer Scrooge and humbug is far from dead.

It is hard to know if his letter about the National College for School Leadership is based on direct experience as it simply seems a prolonged whinge.

Earlier this year I initiated on behalf of nine Anglican Dioceses a full partnership with NCSL.

We ran a pilot course for 15 deputy headteachers in church primary schools. Whilst the NCSL gave us a mentor of high quality we ourselves decided on the content of the course and the speakers and workshop leaders.

The course evaluations rated the course very highly and five of those deputies started headships on September 1 in very different schools so there is no one model of leadership.

Our group is now 14 Dioceses (including two Roman Catholic Dioceses) representing more than 1,000 schools and we continue to have a very full and fruitful partnership with the NCSL.

We enjoy our work and dialogue with their officers for we share a passionate commitment
with them to developing and sustaining high quality leaders in our schools.

Children of this generation and the next deserve no less.

The NCSL, I am sure, is not perfect and whilst I could not promise George Black Heather Du Quesnay in his Christmas sack, perhaps he could rediscover the spirit of Christmas and judge people on their merits before summarily dismissing them.

Danny Sullivan
Director of Education
Diocese of Oxford
Church House
North Hinksey

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