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SEF Groups and Activities

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SEF Steering Group

The Steering Group comprises the chair, the vice-chair (from a post-16 provider), the treasurer, the chair of the Operations Group, the chair of the Secondary Heads Forum, the chairs of SEF working groups, representation from HE, special education, the local authority, a teaching school, and the SEF Subject Network Co-ordinator. This group enacts the main functions of setting the strategic direction for SEF, monitoring/evaluating the impact of the various groups and activities and managing the financial business of the Forum. The Group also serves as a first point of contact for external professionals.

Over the next two years the Institute of Group Analysis (IGA) will be working with the Steering Group to further develop and enhance our impact and effectiveness. To read more about IGA, visit


SEF Executive Forum

At Executive Level, the Southampton Education Forum draws together its links with both primary and HE partners to drive the strategic direction of its work and inform shared curriculum dialogue in secondary schools and colleges.  A key work stream is Peer-to-Peer Review, which represents a City-wide approach to a self-improving schools system, whereby leaders in City schools and colleges work together to effect system-wide improvement.  An annual conference focuses on key educational issues and provides opportunity to identify strategic goals for the academic year ahead.

Operations Group

Comprised of senior leaders from across the City, the Operations Group drives the strategic direction set by SEF. The Group organises TeachMeets for newly and recently qualified teachers, as well as events for mid-career professionals.  There is a well-established programme of learning walk visits, where senior leaders share expertise across the City, focusing on issues of importance to individual schools and colleges.  Quality assurance of the City-wide continuing professional development programme is also carried out by the Operations Group. There are programmes for professionals at all levels: a NQT/RQT programme providing a high level of support for colleagues new to teaching; an Aspiring Middle Leaders programme, for those who are more experienced and wish to move into middle management; and the Southampton Aspiring Senior Leadership programme, for those experienced professionals who aspire to leadership roles.

Subject Networks

Subject leaders benefit from termly, subject-specific meetings with their counterparts from other schools and colleges to share best practice.  As well as providing subject-specific CPD, the networks

  • organise intervention work (Science Intervention Day, for example), providing a wealth of knowledge and experience from across the City to support student development;
  • lead student enrichment and celebration events (the Annual Film and Media awards; One City: No Barriers event, to name but two); and
  • provide an arena where colleagues can moderate and standardise student work (particularly useful for lone practitioners) and share their approaches to implementing new subject specifications.