After first checking with a few folks I thought that it would be a good idea to begin a seminar / thread where folks could discuss the different grading criteria that Ofsted, SLT and HOD use for grading lesson observations.
As a HOD / HOF I'm under a lot of pressure to monitor my staff and grade their lessons. I also put myself under a lot of pressure to lead by example. I've often got annoyed in the past with what I've ofted felt are arbitary decisions by members of SLT or inspectors about what was a 'good' or 'outstanding' lesson' or before they moved the goal posts a good, very good or excellent lesson. However, what I've learnt over the past 18 months is how to tweak or play the game so that my lessons so that they have gone from 'good with outstanding features' to 'outstanding'.
If you've followed any my threads you may know that my school was recently put into challenging school's status as a result of our Math's department dragging our 5 A*s - C including English and Maths down to 19%. Our overall school pass is about 44%, whilst the English department achieves 60% and the history department 64%. Previous to this we were very much under the microscope and were effectively inspected three times last year by Ofsted and the LEA. Each time our school's overall grading was 'Satisfactory', but due to the fact that not enough lessons had improved since the last inspection in October 2007 we deemed as being unsatisfactory.
Throughout this baptism of fire my departent did very well with our lessons being graded as either good with outstanding features or outstanding. In the past 12 months I've had three of my lessons graded as outstanding in the past 12 months by tweaking my them playing the game and focusing on the learning taking place in the lesson and almost physically rubbing the inspectors faces in what is happening in my lessons. If you look at some of the lesson plans that I intend to upload to this thread I actually tell them where to look for the evidence they are looking for!
Unfortunately, now that we are in Challenging School status I now find myself coaching a number of departments including Maths and Geography! However, one of the upsides is that I've managed to get my hands on some very interesting documents including Ofsted training material and guidance for grading lessons as well as the opportunity to work with a even wider range of folks who need help moving their lessons forward.
So the aim of this thread is not to discuss the rights and wrongs of the system, but how to play the game and move lessons from Satisfactory to Outstanding. It would be great if other folks could post and share similar resources, lesson plans that might help other folks who are burnng the midnight oil preparing for an observation next day to tweak or nudge them in teh right direction. Ideally, if I get the time I would like to turn some of the documents below into some form of eading ladder for teachers.
Ultimately, I would like to go on the record that I'm not a 'Superteacher' nor do I know all the answers, but I would like to help folks by entering into a professional dialogue and sharing what I know in the hope that others will do the same. The only way that we can safeguard history's position on the curriculum is by standing together making sure that it remains the best taught subject in the curriculum.
Anyway, so lets get this seminar or thread underway by sharing some of the goodies I've managed to aquire recently that folks might find useful. Please feel free to discuss and share similar resources that you may have!
Ofsted Grading Criteria Explained: Ofsted_Grade_Criteria.PDF 583.49K 254 downloads
Lesson Observation Guidelines produced by our Challenging School's advisor: Lesson_Observation_Guidelines.PDF 532.37K 219 downloads
Edited by Roy Huggins, 11 November 2008 - 12:14 AM.