• The Academy of Saint Francis of Assisi Educate Magazine

ASFA deputy headteacher invited to speak to trainee teachers

The deputy headteacher at The Academy of Saint Francis of Assisi, Gina Cousineau, was recently invited to deliver a talk to trainee teachers to mark the start of the new academic year.

The city’s latest trainee teachers are the first cohort to begin a new Liverpool-based teacher training route, delivered in partnership between Archbishop Blanch Church of England High School and Liverpool John Moores University.

The sixteen student teachers will get to grips with a range of secondary subject areas over the next year, having started the programme at the end of August.

The student teachers have now been placed with expert teachers in the alliance’s partner schools including The Academy of St Francis of Assisi, King David High School, St Hilda’s C of E High School and St Margaret’s Church of England Academy.

Their experience in schools is coupled with on-going university led sessions, and with school-based training sessions led by lead practitioners from schools. The intention is that this combination of knowledge and experience will enable them to successfully gain Qualified Teacher Status and a PGCE, and become high flying new entrants to the profession who are an asset to schools within the local area.

In this case, the lead practitioner was Gina Cousineau who led an engaging session on behaviour management.

Gina has spent her 16-year career to date working in Liverpool schools. Since September 2017, Gina has been working at The Academy of Saint Francis of Assisi leading a strong and committed pastoral team who have further improved attendance and behaviour and this work was recognised externally in the academy’s recent Ofsted report.

The session introduced the trainee teachers to the theories of attachment and learnt behaviours and explored how to create happy learning environments through high expectations and strong relationships. Gina then went on to introduce the power of resolving conflict through restorative practice techniques.

At the end of afternoon, the trainees commented positively on Gina’s “motivational and passionate delivery using relatable information and valuable research-based references.”

Gina Cousineau said: “It was a privilege to be asked by LJMU and Archbishop Blanch to deliver the session to some of the city’s newest trainee teachers. High quality CPD makes the biggest difference to classroom practitioners regardless of experience and it was humbling to receive such positive feedback from a wonderful group of engaged trainees who I am sure will go on to be a credit to the profession.”

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