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Can I look at your planning?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by shikara, Apr 9, 2019.

  1. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    No it isn't.
    If a genuine leader thinks that standards of teaching and learning are not ok in some classes, then a discussion, where planning would be a part, with those teachers only is what is required. And individual discussion and the causes of problems explored and addressed is what will make a difference.
    Asking for everyone's planning will do nothing at all.
    Some people have lovely looking planning, but naff lessons. Others have naff looking planning, but excellent lessons.
    Sharing planning in an INSET means some people bring lovely planning that has no relation to normal practice and people will dreadful looking planning are pulled up even though they are excellent teachers.
    And what a total waste of time for all those staff who are planning and teaching fab lessons.
    sunshineneeded, steely1, drek and 5 others like this.
  2. celago22

    celago22 Occasional commenter

    If I worked at a school that required me to hand in plans, I would leave. I'm not a GCSE child who needs to hand in coursework to be reviewed!

    I like to think that my books show children's progress and that any issues would be raised following book scrutinies, learning walks, observations.

    My school require us to plan weekly. We have to colour code our plans for SEN, PP etc. No-one has ever looked at our plans.
    annascience2012 and agathamorse like this.
  3. bizent

    bizent Star commenter

    We have three “scheduled” book scrutiny’s a year.
    We have a very over-zealous new Maths Lead who is quite influential on our T&L Lead and as a result we now have “informal book looks” whenever the feeling takes them. It won’t be long until our Learning Walks become “informal
    Of course me being old and cynical I don’t tend to make things easy for them.
  4. celago22

    celago22 Occasional commenter

    Only three scheduled book looks? We have one every fortnight!
  5. bizent

    bizent Star commenter

    We won’t be far behind you!
    agathamorse likes this.
  6. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I have that problem in my school, with multiple issues.

    We only have one subject leader only who likes to do book scrutinies. (Yes I know I'm very lucky.)
    One a year.
    Feedback goes something like this.
    Good points: You have taught addition thoroughly. Everyone does some reasoning questions, even the least able.
    For improvement: Make differentiation clearer, maybe the less able could spend more time on fluency instead of reasoning.

    Ahhh well keeps them happy and no one ever checks that any of us have even read the feedback let alone acted on it.

    Progress is shown via yearly assessments (computer generated and marked, so no extra work for staff.)
    SLT are forever wandering about, so see what goes on generally and make helpful comments here and there.
    Only one subject leader feels the need to 'do observations' (Yes same one as above) but goes about it so poorly that it is simple to object and so they don't happen.
    agathamorse and bizent like this.
  7. vannie

    vannie Star commenter

    We have book looks every other week for something or other. It doesn’t bother me unduly as I teach according to policy, mark as I go along and have an excellent TA who keeps me in line. But planning? Nope. I ceased to plan in great detail some years ago. I do briefing notes for support staff and follow the medium term plan but apart from that my planning is scribbled in my jotter. Even OFSTED don’t ask fir detailed planning any more. Why? Because it’s not sustainable and it tells you nothing about what’s actually going on in the classroom.
    drek, tenpast7, agathamorse and 2 others like this.
  8. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Possibly, though I found discussions with colleagues about how they did things very helpful, even when I was doing pretty well in that area. And I also found most INSET to be a waste of time, done mainly, I suspect, because we had to use up the five days. Perhaps INSET is better in the private sector.
  9. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Lead commenter

    Agreed to a point, the downside is that you force the majority whose planning is perfectly fine to waste the limited time available when there are other more useful things that are ignored. Reducing workload for instance.

    The OP STATED that some teachers planning was poor or non existent but then states that they have been unable to see it.

    I was merely pointing out that stating the later negates the ability to assert the former.
  10. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    A few years back I mentored a student. Her planning was immaculate but her delivery was awful. I suggested that we worked as a team, she plan and I deliver.
  11. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    I never thought anything I did was perfect, so was usually open to the odd good idea from somebody who actually knew what they were doing, rather than somebody who hardly teaches at all spouting boring nonsense as INSET sometimes became. It seemed to me that the school did not have enough useful things to do in INSET. Mind you, an INSET on reducing workload sounds a good idea - starting off with those managers who think their job is to create extra work.

    Yes, I understand that. My point was that if a manager blunders in demanding to see somebody's planning so they can decide if it is up to scratch, then they will cause a lot of upset. But if they don't, they can't really decide where planning is an issue. Of course, if there is no evidence that teaching is not good, then there is no cause to worry about planning - whatever that teacher is doing must be OK for them, which is what matters.
    agathamorse likes this.
  12. tenpast7

    tenpast7 Occasional commenter

    The fact that this kind of post exists is why Teachers are leaving in large numbers.
    SLT should be there to sort out pupils not staff.
    suzuki1690, drek, agathamorse and 2 others like this.
  13. drek

    drek Lead commenter

    OP our bark is worse than our bite...........

    I think a good starting point for any school manager is to get on the dfe.gov website and make sure they are aware of the new workload and well being directives.
    Until very recently it was lucrative for those going into leadership to criticise those under them and claim to have the answer to the woes they had made up......through a process of forcing middle leaders to choose one or two in their department suitable for hanging by ‘capability’.....but not before carefully planning and maintaining court-proof folders of evidence of support.....namely observation after observation after observation for a continuous period, each preceded by demands of 5 page planning docs, followed by detailed excruciating minute by minute feedback....by different members of the same culling team to ‘prove’ its ‘fair’.....
    This year taboo words linked to performance management are......observation .grades, planning proformas (so beloved by those currently in SLT positions up and down the land........whose current mission according to their latest remit is to preach the art of wellbeing to the same colleagues they hounded and nearly buried alive in admin tasks, learning walks, tick-lists of evidence of triple marking, mocksteds etc..........up to last year.......

    Maybe you were trained under this method and perhaps are not aware of the recent changes particularly the politically insensitive words to use.....?

    However.....This is the uk. It might well all change back to same old same old tomorrow........
    They might make Simon cowell the new dfe minister......he could invent a new ‘cull the teacher’ reality show.......in which case the leadership skills pre well-being mission control... might once again prove fruitful.
    tenpast7 and agathamorse like this.
  14. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    I once worked in a school with detailed two sided planning proformas for each lesson. It took longer to fill in than it did to teach the lesson and writing out a lesson plan is different from, and separate to, planning the actual lesson, which had to be done as well.

    I did eventually resign, and still had thousands of the **** things on my desk at home, but I found they made excellent paper aeroplanes, and my children had several ears supply
  15. shikara

    shikara New commenter

  16. vannie

    vannie Star commenter

    What’s your point here OP? How did you solve your problem?
  17. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    The 'plans' were pinned up in the prep room and also acted as apparatus requisition sheets for the week so the techs could spot clashes.
  18. creaganturic

    creaganturic New commenter

    They do not have to show it to you. Just expecting them to do so will get a negative result. Rather discuss planning and ideas than demand they show you their planning. My planning was often in my head and I still managed to have an outstanding lesson when OFSTED came. Even then, I had no planning to show the inspector. They checked progress and pupil participation and were happy with that. Having said that, the expectation at that school was that teachers hand their planning in once a week. I never did and was constantly harrassed and threatened about it. As far as I was concerened my half-termly planning was sufficient and set out everything I would cover. The only time I ever set or sent planning was for planned absence.
  19. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    So the results and behaviour were poor? Is that what the OP means?

    My planning was always poor. In the early days it was brain-storming (my brain only) mind maps. Later it was just all in my head. You could be forgiven for thinking I didn't plan at all. There wasn't much evidence of it.

    But the behaviour and results were decent.
  20. jibberjabber77

    jibberjabber77 New commenter

    just spent two years dealing with this and the inability of SLT to manage staff properly. I think three learning walks a week is enough

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