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Subject leads, deep dives and pay

Discussion in 'Primary' started by JessicaRabbit1, Feb 1, 2020.

  1. JessicaRabbit1

    JessicaRabbit1 Senior commenter

    Hi all,

    I was just wondering how subject leads were being affected by the new Ofsted deep dives? At my school, it seems to have caused a lot of extra work for staff members who lead a subject but don't receive a TLR. My colleague, for example, is History lead and is really stressed trying to keep up with the extra work that being a subject lead seems to entail. We get 1.5 hours of leadership time every term but that doesn't seem enough.

    I know not being paid extra to lead a subject is normal for Primary but given that I started off as a middle school teacher where you did get a TLR, I have always found it a bit much that you are expected to do all this for nothing, and now that the deep dive focus is on the wider curriculum, it seems to be becoming harder.

    I do lead a subject but it's not one Ofsted would come and inspect so I'm not feeling it as much. Just wondered what the experiences of others were?

  2. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Star commenter

    In theory it should not be causing any real extra work, although I realise that with the heavy Maths/English focus in many schools at the expense of everything else it probably will.

    What they are looking for isn't really anything that a subject lead should not be doing anyway - knowing what is being taught across the school in the that subject, and that there is some structure and reason to it. That there is some progression in knowledge and skills being developed and that there is some way of identifying what this is. Knowing what CPD is needed and where for staff.
  3. TheOracleAtDelphi

    TheOracleAtDelphi Established commenter

    My understanding was that apart from reading which is compulsory, the deep dives were chosen in negotiation with the head, so never say never.

    I do supply and would say that in most schools which I know well enough to comment about, it does seem to have created an awful lot of extra work e.g. collecting of evidence, book looks and learning walks...major complaints of Ofsted seem to be around order and progression of the curriculum and assessment.
  4. dammitjim22

    dammitjim22 New commenter

    Like you, I’m a subject lead but without TLR. Just went through a maths deep dive with the SIO. It was a lot of work for the two weeks leading up to her visit, but I feel a lot more confident about what to expect from OFSTED, and now that the preparations are out of the way it will be relatively easy to keep on top of things.

    I also feel like I have a greater understanding of maths progression, (teaching, learning, books, concrete resources) throughout the school along with SEN, and G&T.

    I would say that 1.5 hours would not have been enough leadership time to prepare. Maybe your colleague should speak to the head about needing more time?
  5. TheBigPickle

    TheBigPickle New commenter

    Same at my school. Teachers get 2 hours a half term which I think is reasonable. Book scrutiny, observations etc can be done in this time. Reports to governors once a term but it's not onerous. It'll be the way most schools will go if Ofsted are really going to insist that all subjects should have equal importance in schools.
  6. modgepodge

    modgepodge Established commenter

    2 hours is enough to do lesson observations (and feedback?) and book scrutinies? I guess maybe if you only have 2 classes, just about. Or if you only look at one year group per half term I suppose.

    as maths lead in a fairly large (12 classes) school I was given an afternoon a fortnight. We went in to RI (not solely due to me/maths I hasten to add!!) and suddenly this was increased to a morning a week and a second person to help me (this was a six-fold increase in the time given). People need a sensible amount of time to do things if you want them done well!
  7. TheBigPickle

    TheBigPickle New commenter

    Not arguing with you on that but the DT lead, for example, doesn't need weekly release. SLT support staff to plan what they could look at in their release time. There are specific focuses, as opposed to just a general browse over everything, and that seems to help. Not sure how schools can provide more than that amount of release regardless of size when you take into account PPA cover.

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