Being Part of the School Community

  • Trevor MaleEmail author
  • Ioanna Palaiologou


This chapter explores the experience of the three key sets of players who constitute the Robert Clack School community: the school workforce, the students and the local public, each of whom has features that have coalesced over the twenty years into a vibrant and effective learning environment. The scenario begins with the stories of two members of staff, one the deputy headteacher and the other a head of department, both of whom had been students at the school in the ‘dark days’. Each had qualified as a teacher, however, and chosen to work at the Robert Clack School. Their contrasting experiences, it is argued, demonstrate the manner in which the school had assimilated the ‘comprehensive ideal’. From there, the chapter explores the experiences of the school workforce adapting to both immediate and long term change as they moved from the descent into decline through to asking long-serving members of staff ‘why did they stay’? The chapter then moves on to the student body, most of whom were valedictory of the environment in which they found themselves, to the way in which the school worked successfully with parents and the local community. The prevailing ethos that emerged, it is suggested, is the epitome of the comprehensive ideal.


School workforce Student body Parents/community Change Pride 


  1. Holt, M. (1999). Recovering the comprehensive ideal. Teacher Development, 3(3), 329–340.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Male, T., & Palaiologou, I. (2017). Working with the community, parents and students. In T. Greany & P. Earley (Eds.), The changing nature of school leadership and education system reform (pp. 148–157). London: Bloomsbury Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of EducationUniversity College LondonLondonUK

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