DTSA is a broad and inclusive Alliance of schools from all phases based in central England. We are part of a not for profit Charitable Trust and we care deeply about improving learning for all. We believe that every child in every class, in every school, in every city, in every country deserves the best teacher. Realizing moral purpose for us is about sharing and giving back – a relentless focus on developing open and trusting collaboration that contributes to ‘raising the bar and closing the gap’ for all children and especially those from disadvantaged groups. Our building blocks are – committed headteachers; focus; capacity building of teachers and school leaders, linking to results and feedback. We are developing successful strategies focusing on peers learning from peers within schools and across groups of schools learning from each other. We are focusing on four basic things:
- fostering greater intrinsic motivation of teachers and learners
- engaging them in continuous improvement of teaching and learning
- inspiring team working and collaboration
- affecting all teachers and learners
We are building links with schools and other Teaching School Alliances and partnerships of schools within the emerging national framework and internationally. We recognise that good practice can be found in many places and contexts and would welcome your thoughts on how we can work together to learn from each other through our ‘for schools – by schools’ approach.
It is increasingly important for school leaders not to become insular and isolated. More than ever schools need to work together and help each other. This is at the heart of the new inclusive Derby Teaching Schools Alliance – as someone once said, ‘I am what I am because of who we all are’. The South Africans have a phrase for it – ‘Ubuntu’. Archbishop Desmond Tutu puts it this way:
‘A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able, based from a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished. Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you can’t exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness – you can’t be human all by yourself.’