Children in England missed more normal, face-to-face education than anywhere in Europe during the pandemic – on average 115 out of 190 learning days. This disruption has had significant impact on their academic achievement and is set to have a long tail of mental health repercussions. Evidence tells us that pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds are disproportionately affected, and we know that child poverty rates were rising even before the pandemic across the North of Tyne area. Consequently, some of these challenges and issues faced have now intensified. 

We have worked with experts, including the Education Directors from our constituent Local Authorities, to develop a local education recovery programme which will complement the national offer and ensure our pupils receive the support they need.  

There are no great schools without great teachers and great leaders. We aim to support these teachers and leaders with a range of activity including an evidence-informed approach to mental health in schools and a local leadership development offer which will complement national programmes.  

We want more North of Tyne children to be ready for school when they enter the education system and recognise a need to address performance at transition points. We are working with experts to prepare more children for a successful start and help more schools to engage in early literacy interventions. We are also supporting successful transition into the secondary phase by developing innovative solutions with our existing expert practitioners.  

We are supporting pathways to careers for all pupils, by helping schools work with local employers to develop curricula, complementing the work we have started with our apprenticeships hub.  

The Education Improvement Programme for the North of Tyne is delivered as part of North of Tyne Combined Authority’s (NTCA’s) Education, Skills and Inclusion portfolio priority and exemplifies a commitment to thinking creatively and progressively about the widest implications of an inclusive economy.   

Poster with text and icons about the Education Improvement Objectives

The Programme has five objectives, as identified in the Joint School Improvement Strategy 

Objective 1 is supporting education recovery across the North of Tyne, using a school-led approach in tandem with input from leaders from across the education system.  

Objective 2 supports the professional development of school leaders, filling gaps that exists in the education landscape by using innovative new partnership and cohort approaches.  

Objective 3 is working across all transition phases in schools, from Early Years Foundation Stage to supporting the successful transition of pupils from Key Stage 2 to Key Stage 3 through an enhanced careers education offer.  

Objective 4 focusses on improving literacy outcomes for our most disadvantaged children.  

Objective 5 is providing support to secondary and middle school curriculum leaders and teachers to engage effectively with local employers, empowering young people at Key Stage 3 with the knowledge and understanding to make informed decisions. 

Wavehill were commissioned by the NTCA to conduct a research project into Blended Learning across the area and develop a resource for schools showcasing blended learning practice across the North East and nationally.

It is intended to stimulate discussion and highlight opportunities for schools on the uptake of blended learning approaches.
Across the North East, there is inconsistency in the take up and adoption of these approaches and this resource aims to showcase examples of technology being used effectively to support the delivery of high quality education.
  Download the Blended Learning report.

Our newsletters provide regular updates on our progress against these objectives, and are available to download below.

Issue one Insights October 2022

Issue two Impact September 2023

For further information about the Education Improvement Programme, contact