Sam Butterfield, Teach First (UK)

Voices - 11 July 2012

Sam teaches at The Dearne Advanced Learning Centre in Barnsley, South Yorkshire (UK), located in the heart of an ex-mining community struggling with third-generation unemployment and deprivation, where nearly 30% of pupils are eligible for government-funded free school meals.

The Dearne ALC had the odds stacked against it, but this wasn't going to stop a committed team of staff from breaking the cycle. In 2009, Teach First in the UK began placing teachers in Yorkshire, and The Dearne ALC was one of the first schools in the region to partner with them. Over the next three years, the school recruited a total of 11 Teach First teachers, four of whom were for the maths department which was of particular concern. In a 2012 Ofsted inspection, 86% of maths lessons observed were rated as 'Good' or 'Outstanding'.

Teachers from Teach First in the UK formed part of a dedicated staff team committed to raising the achievement, aspirations and access to opportunity of the pupils in their care.

"There is no way we could have made the progress we have made at this school without the teachers we've recruited from Teach First."
Tom Hope, Assistant Principal at The Dearne ALC