Ben Rowe from saltash .net community school reflects on his time at the Global Forum as a Pathfinder School.
image(that’s Ben in the grey jumper, looking like a Westlife reunion!)

Well, it’s been a two weeks since The Microsoft Partners In Learning Global Forum. I’m trying to get my head around the fact that this time two weeks ago I was on a Segway tour of Washington DC!!!

Why was I there?

I went to the forum to represent saltash.net community school. We went as a Pathfinder School. We are now part of the programme and are working towards becoming a Mentor School.

What does this mean?

We went along and shared our schools’ innovative practices in a meeting that involved over 70 schools! It was a wonderful opportunity to speak to a ballroom full of inspirational and innovative practitioners. I learnt so much and made some fantastic contacts with people from all corners of the world.

We also spent the whole week taking an active role in fascinating workshops that dealt with a huge variety of topics. These were all inclusive and interesting. I left with a head crammed full of new, exciting ideas.

I met my mentor school and my coach and a great deal of time was spent with these people, generating ideas and getting a feel for the education scene on a global scale.

Did it benefit me?

YES! I have come away from the course feeling enabled and excited. I have gained a much broader outlook on education and what innovation in the classroom actually looks like.

Will it benefit my school?

Of course! I am looking at collaboration, teamwork and the teaching environment. The findings I have and future projects that are in motion will, I hope, I have a positive impact on the school as a whole. It will also provide the support structure to keep improving and continue being an innovative school.

All said and done the experience I enjoyed has been career changing. I have never been involved in something so exciting and enjoyable. It has given me a whole new lease of life as an educator and will keep me inspired for a long time to come.

We will announcing details of our next Partners in Learning Schools programme shortly on this blog. In the meantime you can follow how Ben and his school are getting on with the programme on his blog - http://frenchrowe.edublogs.org/