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The role of the mathematics subject leader in leading sustainable improvements Thursday 23 rd September 2010 Jo Lakey School Improvement Officer.

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Presentation on theme: "The role of the mathematics subject leader in leading sustainable improvements Thursday 23 rd September 2010 Jo Lakey School Improvement Officer."— Presentation transcript:

1 The role of the mathematics subject leader in leading sustainable improvements Thursday 23 rd September 2010 Jo Lakey School Improvement Officer

2 Objectives Define school improvement processes Consider the essential balance between management and leadership functions Review the essential tasks required to secure improvements;- Judging standards and achievement Evaluating teaching and learning Leading sustainable improvement

3 School Self-Evaluation and Improvement Planning Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Stage 4 Stage 5

4 School Improvement Measures Given the pace and extent of recent educational change it is all the more important that schools, and consequently the leaders within them, continually strive to improve their performance (generally perceived as being measured by such external factors as Ofsted outcomes, performance data etc.) In 2001 the DfES indicated that the core driver should be an; ‘… unrelenting focus on learning and attainment.’ DfES (2001)

5 School Improvement Processes A narrow focus on attainment can lead to a culture of measuring that which is easy to measure rather than measuring that which we value. It should not just be about attainment outcomes, rather it is essential that school leaders consider the processes undertaken to raise standards and accelerate progress;- ‘… enhancing classroom practice and adapting management arrangements to support the teaching and learning process.’ Hopkins, D. (2001)

6 School Improvement Capacity Creating the conditions for continual improvement is a process that must be led. AND leadership must be distributed throughout the school. This requires the building of capacity at all levels. Defined as; ‘ the power to engage in and sustain the continuous learning of teachers … (all adults within the school)… for the purpose of enhancing pupil learning.’ Stoll, L. (2001)

7 Leadership Functions Leadership has its focus within improvement, whilst management is often concerned with maintenance. Leadership functions are seen to be strategically vital and yet, are not often treated as urgent. They are frequently planned with open-ended timescales; Relationships, questioning, reflection, coaching, learning Doing the right thing There is a danger that subject leaders do not have time to lead because they are so busy managing.

8 Management Functions Management is often concerned with maintenance, whilst leadership has its focus within improvement. Management functions are understood to be less strategically important and yet, are often more demanding on a day-to-day basis. They are often associated with tight timescales; Systems, structures, analysis, monitoring, training, Doing things right There is a danger that subject leaders are so busy managing that they do not have time to lead.

9 TASK: Ofsted Criteria for Judging the Effectiveness of Leadership & Management Look at the L&M criteria from the draft subject specific criteria for mathematics. Also look at your school’s Ofsted report under the L&M section. With a partner highlight in one colour the leadership functions and in another colour the management functions. Question: Which functions are emphasised and which need further improving in your school?

10 Securing Improvement In order to secure school improvement there are three core roles for subject leaders:- Judging standards Evaluating teaching and learning Leading sustainable improvement

11 Judging Standards Analyse and interpret data about pupils’ attainment Review with teachers their assessments of progress of their class, identified groups and individuals Sample pupils’ work Discuss learning, work, progress and attitudes with pupils

12 Develop the People (see ‘tips for middle leaders’) Current demands upon mathematics subject leaders include making effective use of data; an important management function. Their most significant role is the ability to lead and develop people; a crucial leadership function. ‘educational change depends on what teachers do and think: it’s as simple and complex as that!’ Fullan, M. (1993)

13 Evaluating Teaching and Learning Evaluate long, medium and short term planning to ensure focus is on effective teaching which is informed by assessment of learning Observe teaching, feedback and follow-up

14 TASK: Understanding the Score Look at the Teaching & Learning criteria from the draft subject specific criteria for mathematics. With a partner discuss how one of the ‘good’ statements has been exemplified by the descriptions of good mathematics teaching from ‘Understanding the Score’. Agree which management and leadership functions could help move a teacher whose lessons have been judged as ‘satisfactory’ to ‘good’.

15 Understanding the Score – example of task Ofsted criteria Features of ‘good’ maths teaching Management functions Leadership functions Teachers listen to, observe and question groups of pupils … Teachers focus on their pupils’ understanding when questioning… When offering answers, the teacher expects pupils to give explanations of their reasoning as well as their methods…. Training and Monitoring e.g. Staff INSET on questioning skills, including dialogic approaches to delve, probe and extend thinking. Followed by learning walk to check that teachers are implementing ideas. Coaching and Learning e.g. Lesson Study supported by leading teacher to assist planning, team teaching and time for reflection upon both pupil and adult learning

16 Leading Sustainable Improvement Lead discussions about school priorities – the ‘Why’? Not merely the ‘How’? Agree targets for raising pupil attainment and accelerating pupil progress Develop a clear strategic intent for improvement Lead and coach the improvement of teaching quality Lead the review, design and development of the mathematics curriculum

17 Leaders at All Levels Leadership Role Leading Sustainable Improvement – Sample Tasks Senior Leaders Set developments within school plan Involve subject leaders in school target setting Monitor generic aspects of teaching & learning Determine priorities from monitoring and synthesize evidence Subject Leaders (see previous slide) Class Teachers Set individual targets, plan interventions and review outcomes Discuss features of good teaching as part of peer observations, lesson study etc Promote partnerships with parents

18 Evaluating School Improvement (and recording impact in SEF) Analyse and Evaluate Agree Priorities Set Objectives Focus Actions Measure Impact 1. Evaluation = judgement + evidence + pupil progress 2. Priorities = specific area for improvement 3. Objectives = pupil progress + outcome + systems + processes 4. Actions=leader + tasks + resources + milestones 5. Impact = tracking + evaluating evidence

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