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Is this allowed?

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by celago22, Mar 15, 2019.

  1. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    Just after some clarification. I had my NQT observation last week, all was good. This week I had an unannounced observation from Head of KS, all good. I've been told to expect another unannounced observation from HT next week. To me, three obs in 3 weeks is just excessive. Apart from the standard obs per half term, are they allowed to observe this frequently when there have been no issues raised? The HT is a bully and will try to find faults.
  2. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    There are no rules about 'allowed' obs during NQT induction.

    The Head, or similar, does need to see you teaching because they're the one signing off your induction.
    border_walker likes this.
  3. Skeoch

    Skeoch Lead commenter

    My approach as a NQT mentor was to arrange lots of observations so that there would be lots of evidence of success and lots of opportunities to discuss progress. Also lots of observations by the NQT of other staff teaching, again with discussion. In this way observations are not threats but are part of professional development. My observations also allowed me to learn from the NQT
    agathamorse and blueskydreaming like this.
  4. patternandsurface

    patternandsurface Occasional commenter

    Unannounced observation? Are they formal observations? As in, observer stays for 20+ minutes and writes up observation feedback to give to you and discuss?
    Or are they learning walks/popping in to see how you teaching for a few minutes sort of things?
  5. install

    install Star commenter

    Check the school policy. Is this happening to others in your school?
  6. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    learning walks are unlimited and will be throughout your career
    annascience2012 and agathamorse like this.
  7. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    Thank you for the replies. As far as I'm aware, it's a formal observation. I thought that we had to be given notice rather than being told it could happen at any time, am or pm, any day. I know the Head has to observe me but it would have made more sense to observe me during my NQT assessment lesson rather than putting me through the stress and pressure of another observation. I think it's just a power trip.
    annascience2012 likes this.
  8. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    why do you think there is any sort of limit on head teachers walking into and out of lessons? Any head can walk into any lesson whenever they want.

    Does your school require a lot of paperwork to be handed to an observer? it is likely that there are limits to the number of times you are expected to prepare an observation pack to give to a formal observer. But not to the number of times someone can come in to your lesson
    agathamorse and border_walker like this.
  9. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    When I was an NQT everyone observed my lessons separately. I admit it's not very fair to not tell you which lesson he'll come to though.
  10. peter12171

    peter12171 Star commenter

    I was told in my third term that unannounced observations were standard procedure. Partly as a result of these I resigned to complete elsewhere.
  11. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Perhaps you should get a job in an international school, where you will not have this nonsense.
    celago22 likes this.
  12. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I just don't see what they hope to achieve by coming in unannounced. All it achieves is high stress levels and paranoia for me. I'm constantly on edge and can't fully relax into teaching. I get that they need to do unannounced observations but they've already taken place this half term. I wouldn't mind so much if I knew I was going to be given constructive feedback but since I know how my HT has treated others, I'm really worried about being observed.
    annascience2012 likes this.
  13. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    They want to see that all your lessons are good, not just the 3 per term that are observed.

    Can you speak to someone you trust at work, for some reassurance or advice?

    In terms of the NQT year it would look pretty dodgy if everything was fine, then one observation tipped you into 'not making progress', so don't worry about that too much. Maybe make a note of what happens or is said or done in the lesson by the Head, just in case.

    Will you be remaining at the school next year?
  14. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    I don't like observations either. No one does. But they re a huge part of teaching life, and much of the feedback is subjective and contradictory. Get used to it! If you are going to be a teacher, you will always have this
    agathamorse likes this.

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