Joanna Goodfellow is a Chartered Teacher and the Deputy Executive Headteacher at Manchester Hospital School. Having spent 20 years as a teacher and then as a Deputy Head and Headteacher in a primary mainstream school, she made the move to Hospital Education in 2020. In 2022, Joanna gained Chartered Teacher (Leadership) Status.
We caught up with her to discuss her journey to become a Chartered Teacher and the impact it’s had on her leadership.
Q: How did you find your way into education?
A: Growing up, I wanted to either be a ballerina or a teacher. I chose teaching! I remember being asked at an interview at Nottingham University why I particularly wanted to teach primary age children. My answer was that I wanted to play a part in developing younger pupil’s love of reading, having luckily been a child myself growing up surrounded by books.
Another reason for wanting to work with younger pupils was that I studied A Level Psychology and developed an interest in how we learn and how to understand behaviour. And so my journey began as a primary school teacher. This passion for books and reading continued in my NQT year where I introduced my year 4 class in East Manchester to Harry Potter. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was the first book I read to my first class. What a great book! (And a great first class!).
Q: What motivated you to achieve Chartered Teacher (Leadership) Status?
A: I taught in East Manchester for 10 years as a class teacher and Advanced Skills Teacher before becoming a Deputy Head in South Manchester and then Headteacher at a school in Trafford.
Having worked in mainstream schools for over 20 years, I moved to Hospital Education where every piece of learning that I had acquired as a teacher and leader was tested! I gained Chartered Teacher (Leadership) status whilst being the Deputy Executive Headteacher at Manchester Hospital School. I wanted to achieve Chartered Teacher (Leadership) status as I recognised that this process would give me the opportunity to continue my own learning about what makes excellent leadership and challenge me to apply this learning in my new setting.
Q: Did you have a favourite unit?
A: I found all of the units throughout the journey informative and all made an impact on my leadership in a positive way. I found that being able to select different areas to research and questions to answer meant that I was able to develop my learning in areas that were relevant to me. I particularly found it helpful to consider how to ensure that my practice was evidence informed and how as a leader to ensure that our whole school approach was appropriate and impactful.
Q: How has being Chartered impacted your career?
A: Being Chartered has meant that my career has been supported through being able to access the very best research and allows me to be in contact with other Chartered teachers who have provided challenge which has supported my own personal reflection.
Q: In your opinion, what makes the Chartered Teacher (Leadership) Status pathway valuable?
A: The Chartered pathway has been valuable to me because it meant that I had to make time to do the thing that I would never find time for. Me! The pathway meant that I had to continually self reflect and consider if what I was doing was making an impact. It meant that I had to spend time reading and researching which I thoroughly enjoyed and could see the benefit and impact in my own practice and of others I was supporting.
Q: How do you think Chartered Teacher (Leadership) Status will influence your future career?
A: I feel that achieving Chartered Teacher (Leadership) status has already supported me to develop my career. It has supported my own professional development which has impacted on my ability to lead change within my own school. I hope in the future, I will continue to apply my learning and share this with others.
Q: Do you believe Chartered Teacher (Leadership) Status will impact the wider teaching profession?
A: I believe the learning that acquired through my journey to achieve Chartered Teacher status means that my colleagues within my own school and beyond will benefit.
Q: What personal takeaways do you carry from your Chartered experience?
A: For me, the opportunity to reflect on my current leadership around developing CPD opportunities within my school was particularly useful. Having the opportunity to dedicate time to consider how we organise CPD and how we measure impact allowed me to consider whether or not we had an effective CPD programme for staff. Meeting others also completing the Chartered Teacher (Leadership) qualification gave me the opportunity to discuss ideas and learn from others which has led to longer term networking.
Q: How do you view your role as an educator now?
A: After completing the Chartered Teacher (Leadership) qualification, I feel more confident that our approaches in school to developing effective CPD programmes and quality assurance processes are more effective. My role as an educator within my school setting has developed through my wider use of research driven approaches and theories and in turn is impacting on how others think and reflect.
Holding Chartered Status is not the end of the journey, it is an ongoing commitment to your professional learning and career-long development.
If you have any questions, you can contact the Chartered College of Teaching Accreditation Team at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can connect with the Chartered Teacher community via X using the hashtag #CTeach.