COVID-19: A catalyst for collaboration

Before COVID-19 league tables, Good Schools Guides and regulatory bodies defined quality in our education systems. A divisive ‘them and us’ culture permeated at all levels. March 2020 hit, our purpose was redefined and a collective endeavour to educate students encouraged staff to come together and pursue the same goal without other competing priorities.

Within a matter of days, long-standing rivalries were put aside, and the mantra ‘we are all in this together’ reminded us that we are part of the national education system, a system that fundamentally shares the same goals, aspirations and challenges.

Despite all its challenges, the pandemic has created a new-found sense of cooperation. Local authorities, MATs, SATs, headteachers, teachers, governors, parents, private schools, universities, and commercial companies shared resources for free, offered each other advice, sought innovative ways of working together and generally were nice to each other. For once, we all witnessed collaboration trumping competition.

What can we learn from these changes? What kind of collaboration is needed to foster the community support required to address the challenges raised and exacerbated by Covid-19?

We know that effective collaboration offers the means for improving education in terms of educational development, innovation, reform, research and strategy, and the sharing of resources. It is also important for reducing inequality – both in education and at the socioeconomic level. This needs to go beyond collaboration between educational institutions: it needs to involve governmental and non-governmental organisations, councils, local communities, and pupils’ families. Here at Cadence, we recognise the potential in further exploring these open channels of communication and methods to collaborate. We are here to help seek new opportunities arising from the pandemic and embrace change as we look to the future.

If you and your organisation have experienced any of the above-mentioned scenarios, we would love to hear from you. For a non-obligatory discussion on how you can tackle such challenges, email us at challenge.us@cadenceinnova.com

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