Professional Learning Blog from IRIS Connect

Exploring what matters

Welcome to the IRIS Connect blog space where you can join conversations and discover free resources, tips and summaries. We hope you find something useful for your professional development and learning.

If you have a topic you'd like us to cover or if you're interested in covering one yourself in a guest post, please contact us.

guide to improving teacher happiness and wellbeing


Is technology the answer to effective inter-school collaboration?

Posted by Katie Eldridge on 16 May, 2018

Inter-school collaboration


The education system is becoming more collaborative. Arguably the profession has always been more open than most, but there is now an explicit expectation for organisations like Teaching Schools and academy chains to foster inter-school collaboration and for school leaders to drive high quality professional learning networks.

Teachers themselves have also been drivers of change. From spontaneous connections via social media to the more formal links via the Chartered College of Teaching, more teachers than ever before are working together to develop professionally and improve outcomes for learners.


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Headteacher insight: How to protect your staff from everyday pressures

Posted by Liam Collins on 15 May, 2018

Guest blog from Headteacher at Uplands Community College, Liam Collins. Find him at @LiamHCollins

As this is my 6th year as a headteacher, it feels like the time to reflect on the journey so far and the next stage of my school’s development.  The last five years have been tough because of the tsunami of change that has washed over us. As the majority of OFSTED accountability moved onto SLTs’ shoulders, it became easy to let the wave of DfE change crash onto the staff, because, as schools, we have just not had the time to reflect on what has happened since 2010.

Young businessman in suit carrying big stack of carton boxes

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Supporting distance learning in South Africa

Posted by Kate Herbert-Smith on 10 May, 2018

Guest blog by Daniel Simons from Trewirgie Junior School

Daniel is the Director of Learning and Teaching at Trewirgie Junior School in Redruth, Cornwall. He is also an SLE for Mathematics and Teaching and Learning, and supports schools locally, nationally and internationally. He has been using IRIS Connect to support his work since 2014.

using video for teacher training


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What I learned from recording my teaching practice

Posted by David Rogers on 8 May, 2018

Guest blog from David Rogers, a multi-award winning geography teacher and Deputy Headteacher at Focus Learning Trust, Hindhead. Find him at and @davidErogers

Lessons Learned written on a chalkboard

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What can school leaders do to improve teacher retention?

Posted by Kate Herbert-Smith on 3 May, 2018

You can’t go anywhere these days without hearing about the current teacher retention crisis. But is it really a crisis and if it is, what can you do as a leader to avoid it in your school?

Contused thinking woman bewildered scratching her head seeks a solution isolated on gray wall background. Young woman looking up 

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Building professional efficacy: The key to reducing teacher turnover?

Posted by Kate Herbert-Smith on 30 April, 2018

When we talk about teacher retention, it’s often alongside topics such as workload, stress and pay.

But, developing and retaining high-quality and motivated teaching staff is not just about salary and wellbeing. It’s also about job satisfaction and building a sense of value and worth in the profession; a sense of professional self-efficacy.

Two schoolgirls hiding behind the laptop in the classroom

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