Yammer within NPAT – Charlotte Coade (Y5 teacher)

  • Name: NPAT (Northampton Primary Academy Trust)
  • Schools: Abington Vale, Headlands, Ecton Brook, Lings,  Weston Favell and Simon de Senlis
  • Fact and Figures: Est. 2012, approx 2400 children on roll, 120 teaching staff.
  • Vision – NPAT is driven by a vision of innovation, high aspiration and achievement, and a commitment to sport and the arts. This approach is encapsulated in the motto: ‘Extraordinary Children Doing Extraordinary Things.’  The Partnership is built on the principle of synergy; that a collaboration of vibrant and successful schools ensures that we can achieve collectively what a single school couldn’t achieve alone. NPAT improves our schools using collaboration and innovation through partnership working that brings together children, parents, teachers and school leaders.
  • One way of linking it all together? Yammer!

I was recently introduced to Yammer during a trip to Microsoft HQ, London back in December 2014 and is something which I am increasingly seeing the benefit of having within the professional workplace. There are many times when I look at my email and have 10+ replies to one message, resulting in many threads which is often time consuming to locate the information that I actually need. I am also restricted to contacting people that I only have email address’ for. Yammer solves this problem and allows much easier form of communication between organisations, and in our case, schools.

In  January  all of the schools came together to form the very first NPAT conferencce. It provided opportunities to meet with teachers who were doing similar things within their classrooms. Not only did it give me an opportunity to hear all of the brilliant teaching and learning that was taking place, but I could also ask for advice and suggested activities for upcoming units of work. Whilst this was a productive day, it was what happened after which made the experience more valuable. Joining groups on Yammer with people that I had met at the conference meant that I had immediate contact with them and allowed me to follow up anything that had been discussed and not let it be forgotten. The power and potential that this has within our Academy Trust is more than I can actually describe in words. Without Yammer, it would be almost impossible for the number of staff within NPAT to be able to collaborate as effectively with colleagues and we would probably have to resort back to email (so 2008!)

Not only has this provided useful within the Academy, but also within our individual school. I am now able to communicate much easier with groups of people within Simon de Senlis and share ideas on one platform. Joining different Year groups and faculties means that I am able to engage in discussions that I would not normally have been involved in, offer suggestions and ask for advice from my experienced and knowledgeable colleagues. (It also gives me a chance to be nosey at what other people are doing within my own school, along with others we are linked with, and even magpie some ideas for my own classroom)

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.” George Bernard Shaw

We recently had our second NPAT gathering and took the opportunity to share the outcomes on Yammer.  Take a look at the gallery below to see examples of the magic that took place during the evening and the weeks which have followed……..

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