Dhoon Primary School has become an IQM Flagship.
Dhoon School is a small, rural primary serving its local community with a vibrant energy where striving for excellent pupils’ outcomes and community involvement are at the forefront. Through the established, valued ‘Dhoon Five’ qualities it was evident that all members of this superbly inclusive, extremely positive and highly purposeful community are given a strong, impressive foundation to love learning.
Empowered to Become Successful Learners
Everyone at Dhoon School is encouraged and empowered to become very successful learners making them extremely well prepared for the next steps in their learning journey regardless of their age. The Dhoon School vision to be creative, innovative and a dynamic learning community shines through not only when you visit the website but when you approach and enter the building. You cannot fail to be inspired by the drive and enthusiasm of everyone you meet. There is a buzz and you can see the constant striving for excellence. The school community has built a culture of one who believes in themselves. A statement on much of their everyday paperwork promotes constant personal reflection that ‘Doing nothing is not an option, just try and you will succeed.’
Raising Aspirations and Expanding Opportunities
The inclusive capacity of the school is such that it provides an exciting range of opportunity and experiences that raise aspirations and expand opportunities for all. There is a corporate belief that co-operative working will ensure no one is left out but all included. One member of the community quoted
‘…by tweaking slightly we include all, everyone pitches in to ensure this happens.’
It is a particular strength of this school that this is a natural action, Dhoon lives and breathes inclusion allowing everybody the opportunity to access everything and it is a wonderful place for listening, learning and watching memories being made.
Inclusive Learning Environment
The inclusive, well-resourced learning environment around school and in classrooms is enhanced by beautiful displays that celebrate pupils’ achievements and support their learning. Leaders ensure that these displays are always of the highest quality, homework tasks set compliments the work in school and items brought in are proudly added to displays. This reinforces pupils’ sense of pride in themselves, their learning in and beyond the school gates where they may access support from others in the community. Everyone’s effort is valued and celebrated.
Effective Inclusive Leadership
Inclusive leadership is very effective at Dhoon. They set high standards for themselves, their staff and their pupils and have established a culture of continual improvement, regularly monitoring procedures to ensure that they are well equipped to identify areas of strength and areas for further improvement. They demonstrate outstanding inclusive practices with capacity to boundary span through their cluster work both locally and globally. More recently the Headteacher has been leading a newly formed local federation family of schools. Through his strong modelling of teamwork and promoting a passion for learning, Dhoon reaches out giving support to others while they themselves learn. This newly formed, highly valued, federation was seen by staff as;
‘a fusion of strengths that continued to celebrate individuality and diversity.’
Through inclusive work this new federation has provided new learning opportunities. This then has ignited the interests and enjoyment of all stakeholders, there was a positivity that even better opportunities were to come as they were only just embarking on their learning journey together.
The Learning Journey
It was a pleasure to review Dhoon School, the inclusion team shared with me their learning journey over the past three years as a Centre of Excellence, showing their ability to sustain high quality inclusive practice on a day to day basis. Their passion and energy to go way beyond what is expected and their passion to constantly strive to achieve more has seen them already start their journey towards ‘Flagship School’ status. Evidence seen has shown me that they have sustained and improved over time and have an excellent capacity to move forward as a Flagship School. Dhoon School is a place where no matter who you are, you are made to feel special.
Find out more about the IQM Inclusive School Award
If your school is interested in obtaining the IQM Inclusive School Award or you wish to talk to a member of the IQM team please telephone:
028 7127 7857 (9.00 am to 5.00 pm)
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
Want more information on the IQM Award? Click here to request your free IQM information pack.