Schools that promote a culture of trust where teachers can learn from each other are the most successful at improving the quality of their teaching. These schools are moving away from making judgements of individual lessons. Instead, they encourage their staff to seek constructive advice from one another and to share what effective teaching looks like with their colleagues.
Estyn’s report, ‘Improving teaching’ highlights how 24 primary, secondary and all-age schools from across Wales are leading the way in developing and improving teaching practices. The report is based on an analysis of educational research and inspection case studies that make it a vital resource for teachers.
Chief Inspector, Meilyr Rowlands, says,
Effective teaching is at the heart of school improvement and central to implementing a new curriculum in Wales. School leaders should encourage an open classroom culture where teachers are comfortable when reflecting on and sharing their practice.”
Today’s report showcases schools in different situations, from those in special measures to those aiming to maintain high levels of performance. One of the case studies comes from Maes-Y-Coed Primary School in Pontypridd where standards have consistently improved by reviewing staff performance through classroom observations. The headteacher believes strongly in using external research, the outcomes of internal action-based research, and exploring good practice in other schools nationally and internationally to inform teaching practices.
Further case studies in the report outline the strategic approaches schools have taken to improve the quality of their teaching. The report highlights how in the most effective schools, leaders and teachers take responsibility for their own development and that of their peers.