Ani Magill, Headteacher at St John the Baptist School, Woking, has compiled almost 400 tips that could help you to improve your school. They are split into 5 groups: leadership; learning and teaching; achievement; behaviour; general.
Ani would like to remind you that you shouldn’t view the tips as a panacea for school improvement – they are simply ideas that have worked at St John the Baptist. Bearing this in mind, here are her behaviour tips 312-319…
312. Have a celebration breakfast/lunch with the leadership team/headteacher for children nominated by head of year.
313. Give the leadership team photos of persistently absent students so you can ensure you have positive conversations with them and they feel included.
314. If you pay staff to do lunch duty, have rules about how they spend their time. Ours pick up litter and have 10 positive conversations with students each day.
315. As a head of year, grab grey children who work hard – see them individually and tell them you are proud of them. It takes minutes and they feel 10 feet tall. Get the leadership team to do the same.
316. Ensure your behaviour policy is simple, understood by everyone and displayed everywhere using positive language. Some poor schools have a policy where the staff fill out bits of paper and if they are lucky someone will come back to them in a week. This causes stress and resentment which then leads to staff absence.
317. Spreading children out at breaks dissipates possible problems. Invest in a trim trail around the school playground/field (a great success at Paddington Academy). Let students book outdoor table-tennis tables, tennis courts and football pitches at lunchtime. Put chairs out in circles in the hall. Get dining room tables with fixed chairs – Weydon School in Surrey have done this well.
318. Do everything you can to minimise the down-time at break and lunch and hence minimise problems. At a school in special measures, I knocked five minutes off the lunchtime and the end of the day – nobody noticed much so I knocked another five minutes off!
319. Catch the children being good. At the same school as above I sent a letter home to the parents of a year 11 boy saying he was working well in design technology. His mum phoned to say it was the first nice letter she had received about her son in 12 years of education – what a sad indictment of that school (and we had the added bonus that he then stopped setting the fire alarm off!)
SSAT’s High Performance Leadership programme (in conjunction with NASA, HSBC and Phillips) launches on 17th October.
365 Ways to Improve Your School
Ani Magill, Headteacher at St John the Baptist School, Woking, has compiled almost 400 tips that could help you to improve your school. They are split into 5 groups: leadership; learning and teaching; achievement; behaviour; general. Read the entire series below: