THURS 17th NOV or THURS 12th JAN
09:30 - 15:30
Expert trainer
#1 ranked author



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Why is it so hard to be outstanding?

I’ve heard many reasons why schools are struggling to be outstanding and I’m sure you’ve heard most of them, if not all. 

Things like:

  • We have high EAL, high SEN or high mobility children. 
  • Our parents don’t value education or have little aspiration. 
  • There’s a lack of consistency, the team isn’t following policies. 
  • Recruitment is an issue. 
  • Staff just haven’t bought into what we want to do.
  • There’s not enough money or resources.
  • The Ofsted criteria keeps changing. 
  • We will have to compromise on staff wellbeing and I’m not willing to put that extra stress on my staff.

These are not the reasons your school isn’t or won’t be outstanding.

How do I know?

Because since 2011,  I’ve walked into a lot of schools and I know more ‘outstanding’ heads than anyone else* and the patterns of how to become genuinely ‘outstanding’ have become very clear. 

Getting to good is about compliance, systems and making sure a demanding list of actions are done every day and it’s no small feat.

Getting to outstanding is about creating a high-performing culture, something most leaders are not adequately trained to do; it’s the reason most schools struggle to break the glass ceiling of good.

Only 6% of schools gain or maintain the Ofsted ‘outstanding’ judgement
24% of schools Heads Up have supported have gained or maintained their outstanding judgement**

I believe that every school can be outstanding. 

I know I can help you.

Join me at “Breaking the glass ceiling of “Good” where I will be sharing practical and fundamental advice to help you on your journey to building a genuinely outstanding school:

I will share:

  • The problems faced when moving from ‘Good’ to better than ‘Good’ and the real barrier to overcome (it’s not what most people think it is)
  • How what got you to ‘good’ won’t get you to ‘outstanding’.
  • The key changes you must make for your school to become great.
  • How to judge your school (without the Ofsted framework!)

Practical tips you can take away and use immediately, how to:

  • Avoid the biggest mistake when have difficult conversations
  • Strategically invest in the growth of your team so for minimum time and money you get a big improvement
  • Why you need your cultural ecosystem and how it will let you create the school you dream of leading and smash that glass ceiling of good
  • Improve your environment for higher performance

The pandemic has tested the grit and resolve of every headteacher. 

Are you even more determined to build a genuinely outstanding school (regardless of the Ofsted framework) for your children and community?

If so, it’s time to step back a little from the daily operations and start strategically planning your journey to outstanding.

I can show you what that journey looks like. 

The event was rated at 9.9/10 by those who attended last year!






Sonia Gill, Founder & Director of Heads Up Ltd

Sonia Gill has worked with schools for over 6 years, walks into at least 4 schools a week and know more ‘Outstanding’ heads than probably anyone else. With this experience the patterns of how to become genuinely ‘Outstanding’ start to become clear. All of the schools Sonia has worked with have improved by an average of at least one Ofsted grade at their inspection.


Here is what will be covered on the day:

09:30 – 09:35: Admission

09:35 – 09:45: Welcome

09:45 – 10:15: The real barrier to schools being genuinely outstanding

10:15 – 11:05: How to quickly grow excellence in your team

11:05 – 11:20: Break

11:20 – 12:10: How to have successful difficult conversations

12:10 – 12:55: Lunch

12:55 – 13:55: Quick ways to create a more powerful vision

13:55 – 14.10: Break

14:10 – 14:25: How Heads up supports schools become outstanding

14:25 – 14:55: The secret clues that give away how good your school is

14:55 – 15:30: Wrap up

All of the schools Sonia has worked with have improved

by an average of at least one Ofsted grade at their inspection.