An appraisal should usually be conducted by the employee’s immediate supervisor or line manager, as directed by the headteacher, whereas the Headteacher, Chief Executive Officer of the trust and other senior trust staff might be appraised by the governance board as per the School’s or Trust’s scheme of delegation.
Notes should be taken during the appraisal as these may need to be referred to at a later point.
An effective appraisal should be conducted in 3 parts:
Using the information collated in preparation for the meeting, the appraiser should feed back to the employee on their performance against objectives set before or as soon as practicable after the start of each appraisal period. For teachers to whom the Appraisal Regulations apply, these objectives ought to be recorded in the appraisal report produced as part of the teacher’s preceding annual assessment.
This can often be an emotive part of the meeting, particularly if it is not all positive. Appraisers should remain calm and measured and provide measurable information/examples to the employee in relation to their performance.
Appraisers should raise both positive and negative feedback in the meeting. It can be easy for appraisers to focus on concerns in an employee’s performance, but if there is something positive (e.g. an achievement, good feedback from a pupil, parent or colleague) this should be raised and acknowledged to the employee.
Inform the employee of what is expected of them in the coming months in terms of individual objectives which, if achieved, will amount to them contributing to the school’s plans for improving the school’s educational provision and performance and improving the education of pupils at the school.
Appraisers should ensure the employee understands any strategic/operational/business changes that may be happening that may impact their work.
Appraisers should also set out clearly the employee’s individual objectives that they would like them to focus on to improve their performance. and set a timescale within which they would reasonably expect the employee to meet those individual objectives.
Appraisers should explain how performance will be reviewed throughout the appraisal period (for example, by classroom observations, carried out in a supportive fashion and not to add to the teacher’s workload, which ought to be documented). They should also explain, and be committed to following through on, that feedback will be given soon after those observations.
The appraiser should be prepared to discuss any personal development areas that an employee may suggest themselves. If the appraiser agrees with what the employee has suggested, the appraiser should include them on the appraisal form and agree a timescale with the employee within which they reasonably expect the development to be made.
Once the employee fully understands how they are performing and what expectations have been set, the appraiser should then make suggestions as to how the employee can actually meet those objectives/targets.
The appraiser should be open to suggestions by the employee, and open to accepting that some input may be required by the School to help the employee meet their targets (e.g. providing more training, more individual support).
Appraisals are often a good opportunity to discuss long term career goals with the employee. By discussing with employees what their career aspirations are this can make them feel more engaged and more likely to stay with the business in the longer term.
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