Despite the date on this, I think it is actually new today.
In two earlier posts (see 1 & 2) I argued that school managers who rely on a ‘progress week’ of Ofsted style lesson observations or managers who try to formalise learning walks are ineffective because;
• The high stakes nature of the observations encourage teachers to plan ‘show lessons’ while neglecting their other work – overall lesson quality declines during observation periods.
• In tough schools genuinely good teachers are mislabelled as ‘inadequate’ if they are observed with a horrendous class while charlatans can avoid further interference from management if they deliver one good lesson with a relatively well behaved group.
• Blaming teachers for things beyond their control i.e. systematic behaviour issues causes stress and low morale.
• High stakes observations paint an inaccurate and unreliable picture of what teaching in a school is actually like which is a barrier to improvement.
• The system is open to abuse…
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