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Shooting Azimuths

Shooting Azimuths

By José Picardo

Shooting an azimuth means climbing to a height, sighting an object on the horizon in the direction you’re travelling, and adjusting your compass heading to make sure you’re still moving in the right direction.

Shooting Azimuths is about constantly reevaluating where we are, where we need to go and how to get there.

Series 2 of the Shooting Azimuths podcast features the speakers addressing the Embley Education Conference, which takes place in Romsey (near Southampton) on 14 April 2023 - For more information and to book you place visit
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Dominic Norrish

Shooting AzimuthsJun 14, 2020

Peps Mccrea
Mar 11, 202328:13
Osi Ejiofor
Mar 05, 202334:60
Karen Wespieser MBE

Karen Wespieser MBE

In this episode, I had the pleasure of speaking with Karen Wespieser MBE, a renowned educationalist with a background in educational research. Karen emphasised the importance of research in education, particularly the shift towards studying teaching practices and the science of learning. While systems-level research, such as government policies and funding, still receives significant attention, there is a growing interest in research that focuses on how to become a better teacher and how the brain influences learning. Karen discussed why it's crucial for school leaders to take an interest in research and how it can enhance teaching practice.

Karen also shared insights into her work as the chief operating officer of Teacher Tapp, a free app designed for teachers that sends three questions each day and shares the results with the community. Karen highlighted the importance of community support and knowledge-sharing among teachers, as the profession can often be isolating. Additionally, Karen talked about how Teacher Tapp benefits school leaders, as it enables them to compare their teachers' responses with the national average and make data-driven decisions based on the findings. Karen mentioned that Teacher Tapp has been collecting data for five years, revealing, for example, that while headteachers have the greatest sense of accomplishment in their daily work, they also experience the most work-related anxiety.

Karen will be addressing the Embley Education Conference, which takes place on 14 April 2023. To find out more about the conference and to book your place, please visit

Feb 25, 202327:49
Caroline Nokes MP

Caroline Nokes MP

In this podcast, Caroline Nokes, a Member of Parliament, former UK minister and the current chair of the Women and Equalities Select Committee, talks about her experience in both government and in scrutinising government policy. She discusses the importance of building a committed team, inclusivity, and having clear direction when setting an agenda. Caroline also reflects on her leadership style, which has evolved over the years, and shares her positive and negative experiences working with different Secretaries of State. Finally, she discusses the challenges of chairing a select committee and the need to harness and direct people's energy towards the committee's agenda.

Caroline also highlights the challenge of diversity and inclusion in schools, particularly around issues of transgender rights. She suggests that schools need to set a framework policy but also address individual pupils' needs with sympathy and understanding. Caroline suggests that the role of government in supporting schools is to provide clarity, but that the government needs to make some tough decisions as to whether it wants to engage in culture wars or approach these issues in a supportive and constructive manner. Caroline also comments that it would be easier for the government to address these issues if it stopped viewing gender from a binary perspective.

Caroline will be addressing the Embley Education Conference, which takes place on 14 April 2023. To find out more about the conference and to book your place, please visit

Feb 19, 202324:14
Dr Emma Kell
Feb 16, 202330:19
Alom Shaha
Feb 11, 202331:10
Martin Robinson
Feb 05, 202334:35
Alison Peacock

Alison Peacock

In this episode I talk with Professor Dame Alison Peacock, who is Chief Executive of the Chartered College of Teaching. Alison explains why it is important to raise the status of teaching as a profession; highlights the role of the Charted college in achieving this; advocates for a teaching philosophy that ensure that learning is without limits and in which children thrive with appropriate challenge; regrets unreasonable accountability in schools; and proposes a system of peer review that eliminates the need for Ofsted as we know it.

Sep 13, 202018:04
Clemmie Stewart

Clemmie Stewart

In this episode I talk with Clemmie Stewart, who is Senior Head of Prep Schools at Surbiton High School. Clemmie advises aspiring leaders on leadership behaviours; discusses the role of social media and podcasting (Clemmie hosts her own podcast with Dr Emma Kell) in developing the profession; refers to her TEDx talk to explain the difference between snowplough parenting and trampoline parenting; celebrates pupils' grit and resilience during the coronavirus emergency; explains the importance of children retuning to school after lockdown; and finally reflects on the importance of giving children the chance to succeed in whatever they are good at.

Sep 06, 202021:53
Oliver Caviglioli
Aug 30, 202028:34
Daniel Muijs

Daniel Muijs

Daniel Muijs is Deputy Director (Research and Evaluation) at Ofsted. In this episode, Daniel and I discuss why schools get inspected and what schools can expect from Ofsted in the context of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic; Daniel also provides guidance for schools, leaders and teachers generally on why and how to become evidence-informed. Daniel and I go on to discuss the value of basing educational decisions on research; and the importance of good quality initial teacher training and continuing professional development.

Aug 23, 202017:01
Daniel Sabato

Daniel Sabato

Daniel Sabato is Deputy Head (Academic) at Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls. In this episode, Daniel and I discuss what schools can expect from exam results this year; the pros and cons of organising a teaching and learning conference; the importance of becoming evidence-informed; whether the genie is out of the bottle now that schools have been forced to contemplate alternative means of provision and conducting their business; and the "conveyor belt" style of education.

Aug 09, 202031:38
Jill Berry

Jill Berry

Dr Jill Berry is a former headteacher and author of "Making the Leap: Moving from Deputy to Head". In this episode, Jill talks about her experience as a head; shares her pearls of wisdom about transitioning to a leadership position within a school; discusses the benefits and challenges of undertaking a doctorate in education; chats about her involvement in WomenEd; and explains why she thinks workload is the number one problem for teachers and school leaders.

Jul 05, 202020:16
Andy Buck

Andy Buck

Andy  Buck is a former headteacher, an author and a school leadership expert. In this episode, Andy and I discuss what makes a great school leader; the role of organisations such as the Chartered College of Teaching and ResearchEd in professionalising teaching; and the crisis in teacher retention.

Jun 28, 202015:26
Dominic Norrish

Dominic Norrish

Dominic Norrish is Chief Operating Officer at United Learning, a large group of academies and independent schools in the UK. In this episode, Dominic and I discuss what impelled him to pursue a career in education; the challenges and opportunities brought about by the forced pivoting to remote teaching and learning due to the Covid-19 crisis; and the importance of life-long education.

Jun 14, 202022:46
Shooting azimuths - A podcast about education

Shooting azimuths - A podcast about education

Shooting Azimuths is about constantly reevaluating where we are, where we need to go and how to get there.

In this podcast I get to talk with some of the people I admire the most in the word of education.

Please subscribe to follow my conversations with those setting the agenda and influencing the profession.

Jun 07, 202001:17