6 Summary

Students have the right to expect excellent teaching, but do not always receive it. There can be a range of reasons for this, and one of those – teacher performance – is within the remit and ability of a school leader to influence.

However, this will only happen in an organisation where levels of trust are high. Individuals must feel valued and know that it is their teaching behaviour, rather than them personally, that is being judged – otherwise it will lead to bad feeling and antagonism. This is why it is important to get practice at providing positive feedback before the more difficult areas are tackled.

The more regularly a teacher’s classroom behaviour is reflected upon, drawing on objective evidence, the less likely it is that their performance will drop to a level described as poor – particularly where supportive development activities are planned. To establish a culture in the school where observation and performance discussion are the norm may take a long time – over a year, perhaps. So although it may be hard at the beginning and you may meet some resistance, persevere, but with sensitivity and fairness.

This unit is part of the set or family of units that relate to the key area of transforming teaching-learning process (aligned to the National College of School Leadership). You may find it useful to look next at other units in this set to build your knowledge and skills:

  • Leading improvements in teaching and learning in the elementary school
  • Leading improvements in teaching and learning in the secondary school
  • Leading assessment in your school
  • Leading teachers’ professional development
  • Mentoring and coaching
  • Developing an effective learning culture in your school
  • Promoting inclusion in your school
  • Managing resources for effective student learning
  • Leading the use of technology in your school.

5 Evidence-gathering, feedback and teacher development as ongoing practice