6 Performance Management tips for reducing workload

We’ve been reviewing a document supplied by the DfE on How to manage change and reduce workload in your school - https://bit.ly/3r49w80.


The tips below will help you to reduce your workload and concentrate on maximising your appraisal process, improving the quality of teaching and ultimately providing better personal outcomes for pupils and staff.


1. Review and streamline your performance management processes.


Link school development priorities to staff appraisal objectives and refer to updated DfE advice on teacher pay and appraisal (March 2019). 


SchooliP says “SchooliP links staff appraisal objectives seamlessly to school development priorities, and the robust framework supplied by SchooliP ensures that you adhere to DfE advice on teacher pay and appraisal.”


2. Agree on Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic objectives. 


Make sure teachers have goals that are within their control, that are closely tied to genuinely actionable behaviours, and that are aspirational yet achievable. Objectives and performance management discussions should not be based on teacher-generated data and predictions, or solely on the assessment data for a single group of pupils. Note that Ofsted inspectors do not expect school leaders to set teacher performance targets based on commercially produced predictions of pupil achievement, or any other data set, from which they would then hold teachers to account. 


SchooliP says ”SchooliP supports any number of objectives for staff and you can provide templates for different types of staff members to ensure consistency across the school.”


3. Ensure evidence gathering is proportionate. 


Consider the burden of gathering evidence for performance management, and whether the approach is proportionate for all staff, including trainees and newly or recently qualified teachers. Staff should not be expected to provide separate evidence for pupil progress and outcomes – it should be collected from existing data sources. Agree on clear success criteria for each objective so that staff are clear what they need to be able to evidence at the end of the cycle. 


SchooliP says “Appraisers may identify the types and sources of evidence required. Staff can easily upload actual evidence or links to sources and attribute them to objectives, standards or courses.”


4. Ensure pay progression is fair and robust. 


Do not make pay progression dependent on quantitative assessment data, (e.g. test outcomes) for a single group of pupils. Performance management targets can be set in relation to robust assessment data, however, these targets should not be used in isolation and other factors should also be considered when decisions are being made about pay progression. 


SchooliP says “SchooliP supports pay progression decisions with moderation, which may then be reviewed based upon the evidence and conversations throughout the performance management process.”


5. Involve staff in assessing their performance. 


Use professional dialogue to reduce the workload of the reviewer and allow staff to take ownership of their personal and professional development. Enable staff to collaborate on activities and prepare for review meetings. Ensure that reviewers manage similar numbers of staff, and provide directed time to conduct reviews. Use light-touch interim reviews where appropriate to ensure that staff are on track to achieve objectives, avoiding build-up at the end of the cycle. 


SchooliP says “SchooliP supports an ongoing professional dialogue and evidence trail via web and/or mobile device, which facilitates interim review meetings and reduces burden and stress, and ultimately workload at the end of the process.” 


6. Create clear protocols and expectations. 


Agree on protocols for staff monitoring, taking into account the impact on the workload of these processes. Include these on the school calendar and stick to the timescales.


SchooliP says “SchooliP is a robust framework for improvement and provides clarity, transparency and consistency for staff.”


If you’d like to find out more about how SchooliP can help reduce workload and reduce the burden on your staff of appraisals, please do not hesitate to get in touch here.

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