ISQAM Level OneModule Three Establishing accountability within your department: “WORK SCRUTINY and FEEDBACK” Gareth Johnson (HMC)
Gareth Johnson – a bit of background… Teaching for 17 years. Mathematics teacher at the Manchester Grammar School – 7 years. Head of Mathematics at Millfield School Somerset – 4 years. Director of Studies at Ashville College Harrogate – 3 years. Academic Deputy at Ashville College Harrogate – in fourth year currently. Involved in ISQAM planning , delivery and portfolio assessment since it first started. The real reason I’m here!
Breakdown of the session… Introduction (15 minutes max) • Some initial thoughts. Part one (45 minutes) • Work scrutiny – the detail (with your help). Part two (40 minutes) • Dealing with tricky situations! Part three (20 minutes) • Plenary and further Q/A.
Aims for the session… • Pose lots of questions to get you thinking and talking. • Give something for everyone (aspirant HoDs/new HoDs/more experienced HoDs…) • Give some suggestions for you to try if accountability is relatively new on your radar. • Provide some additional materials as a follow-up to today for you to look at back at your own schools – and develop/use as necessary. And remember… this may be an introduction only!
The underlying themes throughout are… • Get your relationships with colleagues right and build their trust – holding your colleagues to account can be a positive process! • Establish a ‘non-threatening’ environment in your department – which all colleagues subscribe to – in order to do this. • Accountability needs to be the norm (imposed by SMT/SLT? Really your remit?) • Feedback is the most important part of any accountability process. • Think ‘big picture’ today – and sort details out later within your department.
Freedom…? Before you start, establish whether or not you are already bound within a “framework” imposed across the whole school. • If so, adapt to suit your department. • If not, you have free reign to establish your own department framework which could/should be introduced at whole school level!
Delegation…? Also before you start, decide whether any aspect of accountability can be delegated downwards. This is a very difficult call! • Professional development of your colleagues. • Your own workload and time management. • The ‘extra layer’ if you do delegate. • My own view – this is one you can’t afford to get wrong!
Establishing accountability within your department:“WORK SCRUTINY and FEEDBACK”Part one
Group task one… (5 min) • What is “accountability”? • What is “work scrutiny” and what does it entail? Discuss these questions and be ready to give feedback.
My suggestions… “Accountability” • Performance review/appraisal. • Lesson observation. • Work scrutiny. • Reference to policies such as Assessment, Recording and Reporting, Marking, Homework, … • “Pupil voice” and pupils' responses to marks, comments, feedback, … • Pupil uptake of your subject at GCSE/A-level. • Public Examination results and value added data.
My suggestions… Work scrutiny • Drop-ins and checks? • Shared best practice at department meetings? • 1-1 meetings? (Remember your time management). • Group exercise? (Is this really a good idea?) • Pupil lunches (‘academic reviews’) or other feedback? (Underestimated in value and very easily facilitated!) • Formal department review? • Or… a combination of all the above? (But remember your role and rank as HoD).
Group task two… (5 min) Based on your own experience, discuss how you might make work scrutiny a positive process!
My suggestions… The positive process: • Invasion of privacy and “checking” v shared best practice. • The whole school approach – the norm. • Devoted department discussion time to the above and the development of relevant documentation (transparency). • Make yourself accountable as HoD (lead by example…). • Support when it really matters – when a parent raises a concern – back your colleagues (word soon gets out…!).
Group task three… (10 min) “What exactly are you scrutinising”? Discuss/compare the content of the three different exemplar “formal” pro-formasand rank them according to their merits.
Group task four… (5 min – time permitting) Discuss how you can make the relevant prompts below effective: • Work scrutiny follow-up. • Praise v criticism. • Keeping ‘issues’ at department level. • Delivering the hard message if necessary.
My suggestions… • Be efficient in following-up. • No surprises (any paperwork in advance). • Praise – “criticise” – praise! • Time management (how long for an effective 1-1?) • Ownership of agreed targets and solutions to problems. • Further follow-up must not be forgotten. • Use “accountability” to back your staff. • Effective use of department time to develop templates.
Establishing accountability within your department:“WORK SCRUTINY and FEEDBACK”Part two
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two This is all very well, but what you really want to know is: • How do I deal with the colleague who is refusing to ‘tow the line’ and has done so for 20+ years yet has never been challenged? • How do I deal with the colleague who is genuinely not coping with the demands of accountability? • How should I conduct a difficult 1-1 meeting, assuming the above has failed?
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two “How do I deal with the colleague who is refusing to ‘tow the line’ and has done so for 20+ years yet has never been challenged?” • Keep it at department level if you can (but keep SMT/SLT informed – ‘I am dealing with this’). • Remember ‘fair’. • Think meeting location – yours or theirs? • Think effective time management – stick to your agreed limits.
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two (cont…) “How do I deal with the colleague who is refusing to ‘tow the line’ and has done so for 20+ years yet has never been challenged?” • Make sure that s/he understands that you are there to support at this stage, and that you can work together to make improvements. • Set targets that are easily understood – think who should take the lead here. • Set dates and times for weekly/two weekly follow-up. • Keep a log of everything and report to your line manager if you see no improvement after one month.
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two “How do I deal with the colleague who is genuinely not coping with the demands of accountability?” • Keep it at department level unless absolutely necessary (but keep SMT informed – ‘I am dealing with this’). • Meeting location is absolutely key. • Think effective time management – stick to your agreed limits. • Set targets that are easily understood – think who should take the lead here. • Set dates and times for weekly/two weekly follow-up.
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two “What are appropriate targets?” – comments! • Jim needs to improve the teaching of his year nine History. • Abigail needs to • Ensure that she is on time to all lessons and that lessons end promptly. • Mark more efficiently and less often, as discussed on 01/03/14 with me. • Provide more consistent feedback to all pupils in her GCSE class which incorporates specific targets for improvement, and make sure that this is followed up with them subsequently. (Agreed with AR 01/03/14, progress meeting scheduled for 15/03/14) • Frank needs to sharpen up on aspects of his Further Mathematics subject knowledge, specifically in Mechanics. The weekly mentoring sessions via JMW should start 01/03/14 and it is anticipated that Frank will deliver some Mechanics again starting September 2014. • Jane needs to attract less parental complaints about boring teaching methods.
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two “How should I conduct a difficult 1-1 meeting, assuming the previous scenarios have failed?” • Role play I • Feedback • Role play II • Feedback
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two “How should I conduct a difficult 1-1 meeting, assuming the previous scenarios have failed?” • DO prioritise the issues. • DO make sure that you have written evidence to back yourself up. • DO have an outcome in mind. • DO set an agenda from the outset and communicate it in advance. • DO keep to an agreed timescale. • DO be clear about your expectations (not those of SMT/SLT). • DO follow things up in writing (I expect you to …).
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Two (cont…) “How should I conduct a difficult 1-1 meeting, assuming the previous scenarios have failed?” • DON’T ever lose your temper (regardless of how you feel inside!) • DON’T continue with the meeting if it becomes too difficult. • DON’T necessarily hold the meeting if the colleague is insisting beforehand upon a “union representative” or otherwise being present – seek advice from SMT/SLT! • DON’T be afraid to rehearse a script with a trusted colleague/friend/partner…
Establishing accountability within your department:“WORK SCRUTINY and FEEDBACK”Part three
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Three And finally – think about your own professional development (have you ‘made it’ yet? NO!): • What can you take from this to whole school level? • Whole school work scrutiny – get involved in looking at work in other subjects if the opportunity permits. • If this doesn’t happen – instigate it! • The homework task.
Work Scrutiny and Feedback – Part Three Q/A – ask away…