Welcome to the second edition of the ‘Harrow Way Middle Leader Bulletin‘ a fortnightly digest of news for middle leaders at Harrow Way Community School. I hope this will streamline communication and help you stay up-to-date with the latest key dates, education policy, research and best practice.
I have walked the school on numerous occasions over the first few weeks and it seems very calm and purposeful. Could you remind your department at your Thursday morning briefing the importance of meeting and greeting, with one foot out and one foot in, observing movement into the classroom and the corridor. Period 3 and 5 lessons also need to start very promptly, I really don’t want to see students waiting in corridors for teachers to arrive.
I am looking forward to some positive meetings regarding exam results, department scorecards and department improvements plan over the next two weeks.
The secondary school and college performance tables
The secondary school and college performance tables September checking exercise allows schools and colleges to check their data prior to publication in the 2018 performance tables. This opened on Friday and gave us an insight into the data that will be published.
Unadjusted Progress 8 +0.04 (with remarks +0.05/+0.06) – This includes all AEC students and Jack Flood!
Without 5 Outliers, Kadeem Hibbert, Callum Thomas, Chloe Hooley, Henry Gibbs and Jack Flood removed it would be +0.15
- English +0.06
- Maths +0.02
- Ebacc +0.03
- Open +0.08
- LPA +0.30
- MPA +0.19
- HPA -0.26
Disadvantaged 2018 -0.20. 2017 -0.60 (NA -0.38)
Priority 4 in our New 3 Year Plan is focused just on Outcomes –states: ‘’Outstanding and ambitious progress for all our students that compares highly favourably with national and local averages in respect of new performance indicators and new grading system and leaves no group falling behind our highest expectations of attainment. Our Mantra is “No GAPs, No Dips, No Excuses.’’
What is really pleasing to see is the positive score for all P8 buckets. This shows the consistency we now have in performance across all subjects. I was also delighted with the impact we had with middle attaining and disadvantaged students – Well done all!
I also really like these 2 slides from PiXL in reflecting on results.
Curriculum Planning 2019- 2020
To help inform this year’s curriculum planning, we would like to gather some thoughts on the impact of certain timetable and curriculum decisions on the progress of students and the effectiveness of teaching and learning. Although we will pay close to attention to feedback there are, of course, many factors that contribute to decision making and some ‘unpopular options’ may be unavoidable. The comments will be looked at during an SLT meeting to support our planning.
Over the years I have been involved in many appraisal meetings and literally read hundreds of sets of appraisal documentation. I read all the review and planning documents for every member of staff to make sure they are suitably rigorous, challenging and focused. A few more frustrating hours were always spent chasing up the last few returns! Please do ensure the deadlines are adhered to. The timeline has already been issued by Caroline. Thank you.
Recognising student success…
This year we are experimenting with replacing the inconsistent and administration heavy ‘learner of the week’ certificates with an increased output of Celebration postcards from subject teachers. We are doubling the distribution dates and amounts of celebration postcards that we are putting in your trays throughout the year which we hope will mean more students are acknowledged directly by staff. Extra postcards are in a box in the staffroom throughout the year and there is no reason why these should not continue to be sent by staff at any time in addition to the calendared dates.
Important Information from Nicola and Caroline
Week Beginning 1stOctober – SLT Learning Walk and Curriculum Leader Learning Walk.
At the start of the year, we discussed the important role that Middle Leaders play in monitoring and evaluating the work of their department. Learning walks give middle leaders the perfect opportunity to really see what is going on in classrooms and talk to students across the piece.
Next Week we will be conducting our first SLT Learning Walk and Curriculum Leader learning walk.
The focus of this will be to:
- Check that Teacher Packs are all together and on desks (should include seating plans, class data, SEND profiles) and being used to inform planning
- See how well Classroom Voices is being used in Y7 and 8 to challenge low level disruption
- To investigate the extent to which students have built on what they learned last year (“Are you repeating topics from last year?”, “How does what you learned in Y9 help you with your new topic in *Latin*?”, “Is it more challenging this year and last year- in what ways? How does the teacher help you with that?”, “What can you tell me about a topic from last year?”)
In addition to this, Curriculum Leaders can also follow any other lines of enquiry that have arisen from their self-evaluation work (for example, boys’ underachievement or engagement, why are disadvantaged students not opting for *Latin*? etc)
As you will remember from our meeting at the start of term, work sampling should be carried out ALONGSIDE a discussion with the students. The easiest way to do this is to go into lessons in your department, talk to students and ask them to talk through their books. If you need help to be able to visit your department then please ask your line manager or SLT to support. The form that you need to fill in is attached OR here on Google drive (please go to FILE and then MAKE A COPY first):
Teacher and Learning Folders
Why should teachers have quick easy access to the data on their class?
It is essential that teachers regularly use the data on a student to help when planning. The teacher needs to address different abilities and starting points when planning to meet student needs and stretch and challenge the most able. This is true for every year group and the CATS data is relevant to every year group.
What should middle leaders be doing to support and monitor that planning is taking account of student data?
I would suggest that middle leaders use a department planning meeting to model how they use the data to plan for the students in one of their classes.Then ask teachers to plan a lesson or sequence of lessons using the data to inform planning.
When planning, teachers should be considering the needs of the individuals in front of them and how they will adapt the scheme of work to that class.
This could then be followed up during a learning walk or reflection at a department meeting. Curriculum Leaders may then identify any training needs within the department for subject-specific CPD which they can address in a later department meeting.
The middle leader can then use this as evidence in their METAL and Line Management discussion of their leading of teaching and learning in the department.
Section 2 – Middle Leaders at Harrow Way – Professional Development
School inspection update September
In this edition, we focus on the reformed 9 to 1 GSCEs, including headline messages from the 2018 GCSE results, the reformed science GCSE, using data on inspection, limiting the impact of extremely negative pupils’ progress scores, off-rolling in schools, and early entry in GCSE English.
Ofsted’s Chief Inspector, Amanda Spielman, discusses findings from recent curriculum research, curriculum design and the new education inspection framework.