Teaching Ideas To Bin: Appraisal

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John Dabell

I trained as a primary school teacher 25 years ago, starting my career in London and then I taught in a range of schools in the Midlands. In between teaching jobs, I worked as an Ofsted inspector (no hate mail please!), national in-service provider, project...
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When was your last performance appraisal?

Teachers may now be held back on a specific pay scale to help manage dwindling budgets and Performance Related Pay (PRP) will become the Achilles heel of our profession. All state school teachers are subject to this policy.

What next for the workforce if they are judged solely on classroom attainment? Will PRP improve performance and eradicate poor teaching, or simply offer schools a way of saving money in a climate of reduced budgets? Some folk still believe performance related pay will solve the recruitment crisis. When I quoted this at a recent training event to 200 school leaders, there was a chuckle in the room.

Having spent 10 years leading whole-school appraisal for over 600 colleagues, I can only apologise. Performance appraisal does not lead to teacher improvement, it leads to better evidence gathering and box-ticking. Research suggests (ASA, 2014) only about 1 to 14% offer educational outcome can be attributed to schools e.g. teacher effect. However, there are still many other factors, such as class sizes, resources and school budgets that can influence a teacher’s impact. The remaining 86 to 99% out-of-school factors are outside the control of teachers and schools. (Coleman et al, 1966)

Jury: I would be happy to work in a school who shifts appraisal toward a research-enquiry process – and will be sharing an alternative very soon!

Read the rest of the Teaching Ideas that TT thinks we should Bin in 2018!

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