Beyond the logistics of schools themselves, such as government decisions, the following trends and predictions could soon be part of your regular routine.
If any of the following concepts feel somewhat unfamiliar, your school could be falling behind others in terms of its approach to education and support for teachers.
- Professional development on a weekly basis
There’s a good chance that more schools will abolish the traditional five-day model for INSET and disaggregate those days into CPD, which is spaced and interleaving. No matter whether it’s 15 hours per week or an hour after school, these sessions will help raise and answer important questions.
For example, can your school inform parents about new timetabling proposals for September sooner rather than later? And is leadership at your school good enough to reconstruct its timetable to make this a reality? After all, if it’s good enough for the long-term memory retrieval of students, it’s good enough for the professional practice of teachers.
- More conversations and coaching
With research suggesting that lesson observations are no longer an effective way to judge learning outcomes, more and more teachers are abandoning this approach. In its place will be more conversations and one-on-one coaching, which could require a long-term shift and change in mindset, but undoubtedly deliver more tangible rewards.
Learning walks could also be on the way out in their current guise, with schools favoring a more triangulated ‘lesson study‘ approach to teaching. This will also include professional conversations with a micro-focus on teaching vignettes.
- Replacing performance-related pay with resource-informed appraisals
A common issue in schools is knowing how to support teacher development along with tackling recruitment and workload from within. To combat this, schools will reform performance-related pay, replacing it with research-informed appraisals.
Schools could soon facilitate opportunities for teachers to become research engaged and adopt a critical approach from within the classroom. The end result would raise the profile of action research within the academic community.
- The rise of the deep dive
Like it or not, the term ‘deep dive‘ is here to stay. For Ofsted, this means looking at curriculum intent, implementation and impact over a sample of subjects, topics and aspects to assess the quality of education on offer at schools.
But to generate the best results from a deep dive, it’s crucial that both leaders and inspectors sit beside the student or teacher with an agreed focus in advance. This would avoid the possibility of leaving conversations and concrete answers to assumption.
- Increasing mental health awareness
Teachers need to feel comfortable when talking about their workloads and well-being. Along with offering specialist care from external agencies as part of their CPD and HR processes, schools should also do the simple things properly, such as good coffee in the staff room.
As with other initiatives, teachers should actively promote positive CPD work their school is doing on social media and in the academic community. Schools that continue with traditional forms of leadership could soon isolate themselves, and thus struggle to recruit or even retain teachers.