“A head teacher is the most senior teacher and leader of a school, responsible for the education of all pupils, management of staff, and for school policy making.”
What the definitions do not tell you is that it can be a very lonely job, even when you have very supportive governors and a hard working staff. Sometimes you need someone else, who is not part of the school who has an external view, with whom you can discuss things before you present them to staff or parents. Sometimes you just need someone else to do the things that can be mundane or time consuming – while you concentrate on the strategic stuff!
DES can help you in a number of ways.
Headteachers and principals are responsible for a great deal and one of the most important is for the quality of teaching. Most schools will have a system where they observe staff teaching, have peer reviews and, where necessary, offer CPD to improve performance.
DES staff can undertake external observations and feedback to groups involved in school self-assessment regarding teaching quality and give an external opinion that supports and challenges your own self-assessment processes. This approach to quality control ensures that everyone has the same baseline and that good practice is disseminated and ensures standards don’t slip.
Perhaps in your work with the governing body in reviewing the school’s values, you need to carry a consultation exercise with pupils, staff, parents and the wider community? To back up your approach, it would be good practice to have an external and neutral person to manage this process. Sometimes, really big changes regarding the type of school and the governance need to be addressed. DES can help, from undertaking a full public consultation for schools thinking of changing to academy status or can work more closely with a small group within the
community to ensure that all groups engage with any new plans, contribute to your vision and support community cohesion and opportunity.
DES staff have undertaken specific research for schools into ‘how safeguarding is working’; ‘how do we ensure our students don’t drop out’, and ‘how could our MIS system support us more?’ You may have a specific idea that you want to run by someone who has wide experience in education and yet has an impartial view.
As part of your vision you may wish to extend or add to your estate. Achieving your ambition will need finance, project planning, working with the local authority, your stakeholders and the community. With the assistance and experience of our sister company, Diamond Build plc, DES will be able to sit alongside you to help you realise your ambition. Our colleagues have experience of working in the public sector, and more specifically with building and extending schools, and they can get new developments through planning and help your vision move from an idea to real bricks and mortar.
Or maybe you just need some coaching as you undertake the NPQML or NPQSL?
Talk it over with us – we will make sure any support we provide meets your needs and budget.