Starting the new
review cycle

Other than memorising all the names of a new class intake, perhaps the biggest headache for teachers at the start of a new academic year is the start of the PM review cycle – especially if you are manager AND managed. With PRP, it’s critical for the appraisee. Over the coming weeks, we’ll be offering some tips to help you get the most from the review cycle and highlighting how SchooliP can help with the process. The whole system revolves around a PLAN – DO – REVIEW cycle.

1. Hold a planning meeting at the beginning of the cycle…

…so the appraisee knows what is expected of them. Personal objectives, together with details of how they should be achieved should filter down from the whole school priorities and possibly the objectives set for the department. The appraisee should be informed of the standards against which they will be assessed.

SchooliP: Line manager and staff start a review cycle together and agree on objectives. These can be pre-populated, based on the school’s and department’s priorities. We can incorporate any set of standards you wish to work to.

2. Agree on the number and dates of lesson observations.

Some schools set limits on the number/duration of classroom observations. There is an inevitable element of ‘stress’ for the teacher, before, during and after the observation and this can affect people in different ways. It is important to emphasise that the objective of appraisal is personal development, not a ‘stick’ with which to address under-performance. NASUWT advise “The information collected from classroom observation should be multi-purpose feeding into the school improvement and school SEF, removing the need for additional observation for monitoring purposes.”

SchooliP: The lesson observation can be input directly into the system meaning that feedback can be given very quickly. If a face to face follow up meeting is not possible, the blog system within the system allows for a convenient and documented dialogue, linked to evidence eg documents, photos and videos. Although some schools may choose not to grade lesson observations, it can be a powerful tool for leaders to gauge performance across the school, progress towards the improvement plan and take necessary action. Seamlessly integrating PM, the SEF and the improvement plan is SchooliP’s raison d’ être.

Other things to consider:

• Appraisal reports are the only source of evidence to support pay progression

• The appraiser/line manager should make pay progression recommendations, not the Head. SchooliP allows the line manager to recommend or defer pay progression, backed up by the evidence within the transparent system.

• Agreement – Teachers have a right of appeal, so SchooliP forces both parties to agree before closing a review, mitigating this risk.

Next time: Advice for Appraisers/Line Managers

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