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Federations and accountability

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by littlerussell, Mar 26, 2011.

  1. Does anyone know where accountability lies in a hard federation of three schools in which the deputies are in charge of the day to day running of the schools under an Executive Head?
    I am considering applying for a position (not yet advertised) as DHT in a school which is likely to be very vulnerable in its next OFSTED. The other schools are performing much better and I am guessing the federation has been created as an attempt to boost the school.
    There are many aspects to the challenge which appeal to me, but I'm not sure that I want the accountability of a headteacher without having the freedom (assuming that a lot of strategic decisions are made by the executive head).
    Does this position sound very vulnerable? I can't imagine the HT taking the fall if L&M are judged unsatisfactory - since the other schools are high performing (one is outstanding). What would you imagine would happen in this scenario?
     
  2. Does anyone know where accountability lies in a hard federation of three schools in which the deputies are in charge of the day to day running of the schools under an Executive Head?
    I am considering applying for a position (not yet advertised) as DHT in a school which is likely to be very vulnerable in its next OFSTED. The other schools are performing much better and I am guessing the federation has been created as an attempt to boost the school.
    There are many aspects to the challenge which appeal to me, but I'm not sure that I want the accountability of a headteacher without having the freedom (assuming that a lot of strategic decisions are made by the executive head).
    Does this position sound very vulnerable? I can't imagine the HT taking the fall if L&M are judged unsatisfactory - since the other schools are high performing (one is outstanding). What would you imagine would happen in this scenario?
     
  3. Does the federation already comprise three schools or has the DHT post not yet been advertised because the third school has yet to join formally?
    If the schools are already federated couldn't you speak to the Executive Head to find out how things are set up?
    If the third school has yet to federate I would be very wary, especially if you've been made aware of the DHT post prior to the formal consultation on federation.
     
  4. Schools already federated. I have reasonable grounds to know that the post will be advertised, but don't want to give any other details as I guess this is quite an unusual setup and might be identifiable.


     
  5. I am currently a DHT in a hard federation. I have found it a fantastic experience and great preparation for headship. If the Executive Headteacher is over 3 schools then you will have to be responsible for a great many of the strategic decisions but ultimately it is the headteacher's responsiblity; this has many positives for leadership as the headteacher is just a phone call away if you need assistance.
     
  6. Thanks chocolatechick, that very much ties in with my thinking.
    The shadow hanging over all of this is that the school in question is very vulnerable to being placed in an OFSTED category as results and progress are well below floor targets in a very deprived area. I love challenges like that and wouldn't have any reservations about applying for a headship like this a few years down the line. However, I don't want to end up in a position where I become the scapegoat if things don't improve. I can't imagine the federation governors disposing of an executive HT who is getting good results from the other two schools. I don't want the accountability of headship when key decisions (e.g. staff appointments, strategic direction) are being made elsewhere.
    I am very much weighing up the potential career advantages to the potential career damage if it all goes pear-shaped. I imagine most deputies aren't dismissed after schools are placed in SM (unless they are specifically the problem). Many heads are. This seems to be an unknown zone somewhere between the two.
     
  7. Executive Heads as posts have no basis in any legislation. They are not covered by STPCD.
    As a DHT in a Federation, especially if your school is vulnerable, you might want to find out whose name appears on any Ofsted report.
     

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