Harris Academies
All Academies in our Federation aim to transform the lives of the students they serve by bringing about rapid improvement in examination results, personal development and aspiration.

Central Office

















Staff Development

How do we develop our teachers?

At Harris Academy Falconwood instructional coaching is the core means of supporting and developing teaching practice. Instructional coaching session follow a 15–25 minute observation and last roughly 30 minutes in order to allow ample opportunity for deliberate practice.  

At the heart of instructional coaching at HAF we model the practice we think our colleagues should adopt and provide meaningful feedback on rehearsal opportunities. We know that practice makes permanent.  

Instructional Coaching Graphic


Staff CPD and Training Model


Monday: Teaching and Learning CPD slot for 15 minutes at 8.05 am.

Thursday: Whole school / in departments, focusing on curriculum implementation and impact.

Friday: Whole staff briefing – 8.05am


5 days per academic year

High Quality INSET days, weighted heavily on whole school and department curriculum training

Initial Teacher Training

At Harris Academy Falconwood, we embody the values of Serve, Support, Success. As a result, we go to great lengths to nurture our trainees and ensure they have a positive experience while training with us. We also go to great lengths to ensure that our successful trainees stay on and thrive in their careers at Falconwood. 

We offer multiple routes to qualified status; the Harris Federation led National Institute of Teaching Initial Teacher Training and PGCE placements through Further Educaton partners such as University College London and London Metropolitan University. We also strive to help our unqualified teachers become qualified by funding degrees and  providing mentorship through the QTS Assessment Only route.

Every week, we provide bespoke, responsive in-school training sessions for our PGCE and Schools Direct trainees run by our highly experienced team of Lead Practitioners, and our mentoring team is both highly experienced and passionate. 


Early Careers Teachers (ECTs)

Harris Academy Falconwood has embraced the new Early Careers Framework to ensure that our ECTs transition from trainee to experienced practitioner as smoothly as possible. We work closely with the Harris Chafford Hundred Appropriate Body and National Institute of Teaching to provide an excellent and supportive ECT experience. The NIOT provides world-class training for both ECTs and their mentors.



Our mentors deeply care about the development of their ITT and ECT mentees, and we aim to match them with the most qualified and experienced staff members. Our Lead Practitioner team are deeply involved in the mentoring process, and their skills are enhanced by both in-house and NIOT training which aims to keep them up to date with the most relevant and up-to-date androgogic approaches.

Trainee Testimonials

My experience as a trainee teacher here at HAF was positive. I felt welcomed and well supported by staff. Training sessions did a good job at filling in the gaps not covered by ITT training days, such as ensuring a good work/life balance, practical classroom management techniques and setting realistic as opposed to idealistic expectations of what working in the profession is. I enjoyed working with my department, agreed with the school's ethos and felt that there was a substantial level of support for trainees and ECTs.Mr Green, English Teacher

I felt challenged and encouraged to challenge myself. In my second term of Teacher Training I was trusted with schemes of work to plan and, in my ECT year, given A-level classes which made me feel my mentors and HODs believed in me. My mentors were extremely supportive and understanding in both a professional and personal context. Mentors allowed me to have a very clear progression through my development, and always understood my strengths and areas to improve. I wanted to stay at HAF because I believed it was the best place to continue developing as a teacher and I could learn from the people here. Every single year I have had opportunities to progress in my career, and have been encouraged to apply to additional responsibilities, such as Cultural Lead and Head of History.Mr Baxter, Head of History

My mentors were very consistent and were able to help me develop in any areas I needed support. The whole Maths team helped me out when I needed and were extremely supportive. I stayed at HAF because I have good working relationships with my team, and I like the culture at the school. I have always enjoyed working here, and I wouldn’t have stayed if I didn’t. HAF has always been ready to help my career develop through courses such as the Team Leadership diploma and NPQ.Mr Fowler, Head of Maths

There was always someone to help and support me. My mentor took time to reassure me and help me develop in the areas which were taking me a little bit longer to overcome. I decided to stay at HAF because I really like my team. HAF has helped me develop my career into becoming the SENCO, and I’m really grateful for people seeing my potential and giving me that opportunity. Ms Nwidag, SENDCO

I found the in-school training, which linked to our ITT training, very useful and I felt very supported. My mentor was very good at helping to develop me through constructive feedback and I felt like I could also ask other people in my department and around the school for help whenever I needed it. I felt very much a part of my department, and that made me want to stay. HAF has helped my career develop by giving me the opportunity to be a mentor, and by giving me the chance to do an NPQ in Teacher Development. Mrs Gunsman, Science Teacher