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Hornsey Hotshot - Mr Ali
My blogs this term have been woefully ignored and for this I apologise. However, it will not have escaped anyone’s notice that we have more recently been under a certain amount of unusual pressure(!). I have often said to students and staff that it ‘takes a village’ to run our school and it really has done of late.
Each week when we are at a staff briefing, staff nominate via line managers, someone for the Hornsey hotshot cup – this is a nomination by colleagues for someone who has gone above and beyond in the course of their work for the students or staff in their care.
Today – I am writing to share with you one of the small army of our colleagues at work who has really gone above and beyond. I must stress that he is one of many who have really supported us recently, and I do not wish to detract from everyone’s efforts, but without his contribution we really couldn’t have moved forward with any of our plans – for he is the mighty and humble Mr Ali.
So Mr Ali – thank you.
Over the last 14 days, Mr Ali has facilitated all of the logistics for our movement to online platforms – all at unbelievably short notice and always with the good humour and strategic understanding that makes him such an asset to our SLT team. He has literally fielded hundreds of emails – from staff, from parents and students, never failing to return these in his usual respectful manner. It was through Mr Ali’s expertise that we ensured safeguarding protocols were met with the use of GDrive mailboxes ensuring that all correspondence between staff and students was open and transparent, protecting your children and our staff during this time.
Parents who have been with us for a while will know that the school has spent a significant amount of resource updating its IT systems and infrastructure. We are currently in year 2 of a 5 year overhaul, with many of our planned updates planned sensibly around the school holidays. We have had to respond to the changing crisis by throwing out careful plans and bringing forward platforms immediately and at speed. We were excited to bring our school IT into line with and ahead of other schools after a significant period of ‘making do and mend’. I can’t tell you what security it gives me as a leader to be able to say - ‘this is the problem, we need this as a solution … and I need it now’ and know that he will deliver. He really has done with the work he has undertaken to ensure we can move, at short notice, to online working for 100’s of you. He is but one man, but his logistics, planning and skills have been phenomenal in every sense during this period of time.
I have huge respect for my small and dynamic SLT team. They are unfailing role models for those that seek to understand what makes a senior leader. They work incredibly hard, as do all of our staff, to deliver strong outcomes for all of our students. This isn’t to detract from the efforts of others at all. It is often said that a crisis brings out the best in the public sector. I think there’s truth in this, but I also think that day to day is the real test of what we offer. I am proud to represent a staff team that have sought at every level to work together to ensure some routine and capacity to keep learning for our students.
So thank you Mr Ali for typifying what it takes to be part of our village. For all of the letters, explanations, and guides you have created, the hundreds of hours you have put in, for responding to texts that started at 5am every day we were planning to move things forward as a critical incident team. As I am no longer able to be onsite – this blog serves as a virtual Hornsey Hotshot Cup as thanks for all you have done and continue to do for the school.
Who will be next …?