LJMU showcased its educational leadership credentials as the university hosted a national Foundation for Education Development summit focusing on a long-term education plan.
Education spokespersons from the three main political parties, including cabinet minister and LJMU alum the Rt Hon Gillian Keegan, joined educationalists, academics and key education policy stakeholders at the event entitled ‘Shaping our education system for the next decade’.
Ruth Slater, Head of the Centre for Educational Leadership in the School of Education at LJMU, said the event was focussed on the key policy and practice changes that the profession in all sectors wanted to see made in the next 10 years.
Opening the event, Carl Ward, CEO of the Federation for Education Development, said it was ‘bizarre’ that the country had never had a long-term plan for education and its own survey indicated 97% of professionals believed a long-view was well overdue.
Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram, who has been working with FED for 18 months as Labour prepares the ground for power, said change was coming and there was a growing clamour for it.
Delivering a passionate opening address at the event, he said: “Teachers and educators are entrusted with our most precious resource – our youngsters - and we have to ensure they are in the best possible position to deliver. What we don’t need is more inflexible diktats from Westminster.”
Mr Rotheram had previously opened the Centre for Educational Leadership at LJMU (in January 2023) saying it was needed to help “return some of the prestige to the profession and create a beacon of a better way for school leaders and other leaders in education.”
Dr Ceri Daniels, Director of the School of Education, said turning education around would require giving greater voice to learners, teachers, parents and others with a real stake in the future.
She said: “I would hope to see education in ten years time be a much less stressful pressured and overburdened place, a place where wellbeing is given as much priority as curriculum and where success is measured much more broadly than we currently see.
“LJMU, through leadership training, early childhood development, teacher training and research is 100% committed to improving the capacity of schools and other educational settings to be places where people grow, not just academically but as valued individuals and citizens.
“Our initiatives, such as the new Centre for Educational Leadership, puts partnership at the heart of our mission, so we will continue to work with the FED, the Combined Authority, councils, diversity innovators, FE and school leaders to improve education.”