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Southwark Schools' Learning Partnership

Southwark Schools Learning Partnership (SSLP) is a unique collaboration between eighteen local schools based in, and around, the London Borough of Southwark. The partnership promotes projects for students and CPD (Continuing Professional Development) for staff through Connecting Schools, Connecting Staff and Connecting Students.

Our role and priorities

Dr Joe Spence and Mr Marcus Huntley, Principal at Compass School Southwark, are co-directors of the partnership, providing leadership in connecting schools, staff and students. We also organise a variety of SSLP projects and employ a coordinator to help enhance their impact.

As a partnership of equals, Dulwich College also recognises it is just as important to participate in SSLP projects as to host them for others, and we have joined events including the Gospel Choir workshop at Kingsdale Foundation School, the Debating Competition at JAGS and the sixth form science quiz hosted by Charter North Dulwich and Alleyn's.

The SSLP priorities for 2022/23 are to enhance student voice and to encourage a partnership-wide conversation about sustainability. We consider these priorities and how they can be central to our planning and delivery, developing opportunities exclusively with our SSLP partners in mind.

Connecting Schools

These opportunities give schools access to something that would be difficult to achieve alone.

  • Thinking About... webinars are a joint project between Dulwich College and the SSLP. We encourage students at all SSP schools to take turns in hosting guest speakers. The webinars are open to students, staff and parents - in fact anyone interested - and a large variety of topics are discussed. There were sixteen webinars in 2021/22 attracting a total of 677 viewers. Popular guest speakers last series included Sir Nick Partridge,  Bishop Rose Hudson-Wilkin and Professor Bob Waymouth. Many of the recordings can be accessed via the SSLP YouTube channel.
  • So You Want To Be... is a new webinar series introduced in Autumn 2021. Key stage 3 students are invited to attend the career webinars in class groups, supervised by a teacher and supported by older students. In 2021/22 there were five webinars and our partnership coordinator supported other schools to take a host role. Our students led on So You Want To Be... an Architect.
  • Young Economists' Conference ran in-person for the first time in July 2022. A-Level pupils came to Dulwich College to listen to two out of four speakers in the morning before working in small groups in the afternoon, and ending with a panel discussion. The day enriched the A-Level curriculum and inspired the 160 students present to consider economics-related subjects at degree level.
  • Oxbridge and Medical Interviews... Dulwich College completes mock-Oxbridge interviews and Mock Multiple-Mini-Interviews (medicine) for SLLP students. In 2020 25 SSLP students were successful with their applications.

Connecting Staff

These opportunities provide staff from SSLP schools access to events that allow them to interact with others from the partnership.

  • Pastoral Leader Professional Development... together with James Allen's Girls School & Alleyn's we sponsor professional development sessions for new and aspiring pastoral leaders from SSLP schools. Last year we jointly supported 56 Aspiring Senior Leaders with three online sessions and an in-person networking event.
  • SSLP Subject Hubs are useful networking opportunities for staff members who often work individually. Our school counsellor leads a growing network of counsellors working in SSLP schools who share best practice, and our Librarian is a committed member of the Library Hub. The Music Hub is particularly active and involves several music teachers from the College.

Connecting Students

These opportunities allow students from multiple SSLP schools to work together as equals on a joint aim.

  • This year, 2022/23, our students are focusing on Sustainability. We have two student Ambassadors who sit on the SSLP Council. Together they helped to organise and run a student conference at 15Hatfield including speakers from OddBox and the London Wildlife Trust. Since the conference our students have started working with peers from St Thomas the Apostle College and Harris Boys Academy East Dulwich on a project that will provide the template for After-School Cookery Clubs focusing on Sustainability. SSLP Ambassadors are planning a Model United Nations event for later in the year.
SSLP Anti-Racism Conference attendee
"I will strive to change the social norms in our society to make sure that people stop being casually racist."Anti-Racism Conference attendee
SSLP Professional Development attendee
"A really good session with lots of ideas, good ways to overcome the virtual delivery barrier and a good mix of interactive/video with lecture-style sections."Professional Development attendee
SSLP Oxbridge applicant
"I just finished both interviews and I think they went reasonable well. I talked about port-war housing as you advised. Thanks so much for all your help it made me feel a lot more confident."Oxbridge applicant
SSLP Thinking About attendee
"I really enjoyed the format of this session, especially that it was led by students, and expertly so."
Thinking About attendee
Students presenting at Young Economists Conference 2022

To learn more about the SSLP contact:

Nathalie Whittington

SSLP and Local Partnerships Coordinator

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