Role of a Professional Advocate for Children in Education (PACE)
All schools and academies in Derby are allocated a named LA officer for School Improvement known as a Professional Advocacte for Children in Education (PACE). This person is the main link between the school and the local authority.
Almost all schools have opted to buy ‘Derby Winners’ so that the PACE will visit school at least once every term and will work with the senior leaders and governors to provide a balance of challenge and support. Visits usually focus upon achievement, quality of teaching, behaviour and safety and/or leadership and management and they are tailored to meet the needs of individual schools. The PACE will also produce a report after each visit.
PACEs undertake a range of school improvement activities. For example, they often quality assure the school’s self-evaluation, analyse the school data, carry out paired lesson observations with staff from the school, undertake behaviour and safety audits and deliver training to senior leaders, middle leaders, whole staff bodies and teaching assistants.
In addition to this, PACEs also work closely with governing bodies. Many deliver training as part of the LA governor support and improvement package and many schools use the knowledge, skills and understanding of the SSIOs to deliver bespoke training to individual schools or groups of schools. PACEs also support a number of governing bodies with the performance management of head teachers and governing bodies and schools usually use the expertise of the PACE team to prepare for Ofsted inspections.
This team is very experienced and extremely well regarded. As a result of this, many schools are buying extra time from their PACEs, the vast majority of academies within the city are purchasing their time, and schools from outside of Derby also buy their services: Make sure that your school is making the most of its PACE.