School Leadership Action Planning

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Action Plan


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How can school leaders create an action plan on paper that is meaningful and truly leads to notable actions being made?

I am not a fan of action planning, probably becuase I have written so many and the process in my school life has been laborious and has involved countless meetings. Yet, I understand the importance of developing a common framework for leadership, accountability and for developing a school vision – action planning has its place in any organisation. This post shares some ideas and templates.

A template for action-planning …

How you bring content which is written on a piece of paper to life? Well, here’s the challenge for all school leaders.

I think I have written every action plan possible within the school, for implementing a new statutory policy, developing an action plan for teaching and learning as well as professional development, or a post-action plan following an Ofsted inspection or an individual teacher’s capability plan. Whatever it is, I’ve written it. I have every template you can imagine stored on my hard drive … just ask!

How to use this template?

This document took at least 5 working days to produce, and then another significant period of time to refine with other school leaders around the table. I would recommend that the person producing this document (other than the headteacher) is the person leading whole-school appraisal and professional development.

This is a template for a post-inspection school action plan. It can be applied as a template to create an action plan for your school in any setting using the same headings provided. Please download and use with context and not as an absolute framework for your school.

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This template is an excellent structure for developing a framework to generate and maintain a vision, structuring accountability as well as revisiting milestones.

Top tip

I would suggest they create this document with sufficient detail before taking it to others for comment. This document has been developed with significant expertise in school inspection, not just my own experiences of Oustanding and Special Measures’ inspections

Although I cannot answer those individual questions for your school setting, at least the following series of links and resources may offer some suggestions for you.

Other leadership strategies

  1. The 5-Minute Change Plan provides an overview for schools which are looking to introduce change by Kotter (1996), and is regarded as an excellent starting point for anyone implementing change.
  2. For the year ahead, try 50 forward-planning questions for school leaders.
  3. What are the consequences of your decisions?
  4. What may happen when you are confronted with ideas you disagree with?
  5. Do you have the right people around you to achieve your goals?
  6. How to secure accountability with leadership actions. There are five other posts in the series which ask:
  7. What makes a good senior leader?
  8. How would you lead teaching and learning?
  9. How to develop yourself and work with others?
  10. Can you manage the school organisation?
  11. How can you engage with the internal and external school community?
  12. and 21 leadership habits.

It is recommended that you use the headings within the resource I have shared and then delete all the content within the table and add details to suit your own school setting. If you would like a Word.docx version, please get in touch.

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