About Us

Education Connect is the professional development dimension of The Challenge Academy Trust and was born out of a strong desire to engage with the wider educational community; providing expert CPD, at exceptional value. 

Initially, we decided to harness the collective power of 10 academies and coordinate a trust-wide CPD programme where our most talented, experienced staff regularly collaborate and share best practice as well as invite experts from all over the country to deliver sessions.  

We also established key areas for development, then coordinated a shared approach to obtaining key speakers, facilitators and specialists, sharing resources, costs and time.  

A culture of continual growth, and a craving to continually improve, has led to a fully-engaged staff who are hungry for CPD. 

Colleagues are passionate about empowering themselves – and others – to deliver excellent teaching and to facilitate learning that encourages superb outcomes for young people. 

As a result of the individual academies’ success – and TCAT’s excellent record of providing school-to-school support – a need for local, professional support and development was identified. 

Therefore we decided to include colleagues from further afield with the same intention of providing expert CPD for professionals, by professionals. 

We believe value is paramount and that professional development should excite, inspire, be research-led and innovative.  

Our CPD offer is therefore tailored to a school’s needs to ensure it has an impact in the classroom while feedback / evaluation ensures it is effective. 

Packages have been developed focussing on SEND, well-being, literacy and leadership, to name just a few.  

The courses are multi-faceted, drawing on the talents of many experts, professional bodies and trainers. Each one is based on logic models for change – longitudinal courses that offer opportunities to network and reflect. 

If you feel your school could benefit from anything I have mentioned please get in touch. I am passionate about getting schools the training and development they require to improve the lives of young people everywhere.  

You can find out more on this website, but please contact me with any questions you might still have after further reading. 

I sincerely hope to work with you soon, 

Karis 

Improving outcomes in the classroom

It goes without saying that the quality of CPD really matters when it comes to improving outcomes in the classroom so we use the latest recommendations and research to deliver the most relevant training.

We take inspiration from EEF-funded projects, toolkits, the Teacher Development Trust and impact reports to provide the most innovative ideas and resources.

Education Connect’s professional development is provided online and in person at our amazing training space in Warrington. All our sessions are interactive and engaging, utilising the most innovative and up-to-date technology.

We encourage sharing best practice and provide delegates with regular opportunities to collaborate virtually or in person when possible.

We also offer ‘teach meets’ and learning festivals.

Effective professional development

We recognise that effective CPD is:

  • Supported by the school’s leadership
  • Sustained over at least two terms – utilising theories of change models
  • Includes expert input and peer collaboration

Another key aspect of our training allows time for colleagues to put what they have learned into practice before returning to Education Connect to feedback how effective it has been. At this point we allow space to discuss and collaborate so that everyone can learn from one another.

We believe evaluation and reflection are key factors in ensuring long-lasting, positive changes that have a measurable impact. Therefore our courses are not stand-alone and include opportunities to revisit what has been learned.

Our CPD is delivered by current practitioners – both teachers and leaders in education – so you can be assured they relate to you and your experiences in the classroom.

What you take away

We believe you will enjoy our courses. Not only the learning of new ideas and inspiration to take back to the classroom, but also working with like-minded colleagues who share you love for education.

There are also accredited qualifications that will enhance your CV, improving your chances of progression within your current organisation or beyond.

What we offer

  • Innovative Professional Development
  • CPD event support
  • Accredited qualifications
  • Expert speakers
  • Collaboration with colleagues
Connect with us:
Connect with us
Education Connect
The Challenge Academy Trust, c/o Bridgewater High School, Broomfields Road
Warrington, WA4 3AE
Tel: 01925 216037