Bodiam C E School is federated with Etchingham C E School in the Riverside Federation. The schools share an Executive Headteacher, SENDCO and Business Manager. Regular events take place across the schools for pupils and staff work and train together to provide the best possible opportunities for the pupils of both schools, each of which reflects its own unique context and community. We have a single governing body.
The rationale of the Federation is ‘Better together.’ We believe the arrangement to be a key driver in our pursuit of excellence so that we meet the needs and aspirations of all pupils. The concept of Federation reflects current thinking in National and Local Authority circles. There have been many ‘spin offs’ from our collaboration which are reflected in positive feedback from all communities.
There are 3 main areas of partnership working:
Whole School / Key Stage / Class Events
Pupils come together and enjoy collaborating and co-operating together in learning opportunities which always have an element of peer challenge and stimulus. Most visits which enhance our exciting and relevant curriculum take place as joint ventures across peer classes / key stages.
As part of the pupil voice contribution to Learning Journeys, our pupils across both schools and both key stages often ask to go on a visit to experience aspects of the Learning Journey in a different context.
Bodiam C E School visit Etchingham C E School every summer to perform their annual summer production. The schools perform the same show and share the stage / backdrop / resources lighting facilities.
Staff – Collaboration and Professional Development
Staff across both schools share expertise and professional development opportunities. These include coaching, INSET and resources to support learning. Staff plan together with outcomes reflecting the individual classes for which they are responsible.
This aspect of our Federation underpins every aspect of the life of both schools
The school is also in a Collaboration with Battle Outlying Schools (Memorandum of Understanding signed September 2018) - Netherfield, Ninfield, Catsfield and Crowhurst. This is an evolving partnership with all staff working together for identified priorities.
Small group support
Through working together, we have been able to provide pupils with opportunities for focussed tuition in gender, ability and interest groups. The impact has been increased motivation of pupils and improved attainment.
Pupils are enthusiastic, extremely hard working and very positive about their learning. When visiting classrooms, I saw pupils consistently well engaged, and sometimes deeply engrossed, during lessons. Throughout the day, I observed nothing but impeccable behaviour. Pupils told me that this day was just like any other.