We first met as a group at a conference at the School of Education at UEA. NASC had been going for about a year, but schools had been working on their own research projects: John’s idea was that in ‘Phase 2’ of NASC, schools would experiment with working with each other on areas of common interest related to Disaffection.
There were about 9 of us from about 5 different schools, and as the UEA ‘mentor’ I was acting as chair. A key starting point was the general acceptance that just as there were differences in the working atmosphere in the classroom between school, there were also differences within schools. Why did some teachers manage to get a more relaxed, calm and coooperative atmosphere than others? Was it about school subject, or which classes people taught, or about teacher characteristics? And what were pupils’ views about what made a good teacher, and a good lesson? We decided to try and work out a questionnaire to explore these questions. That was to be our main ‘research instrument.’
Devising an action plan