Category: Leadership

Giving Feedback

I’ve experienced some poor lesson observation feedback in the past which has had the opposite effect to that which I’m sure the observer wanted. So what do we need to keep in mind as Middle Leaders when giving feedback:

  • Do it soon – don’t hang about, and try to give it on the same day or very soon after. It’s good for the teacher who wants to know what you thought, but also for you as you don’t forget any key points as they are still fresh in the mind.
  • Get a room – do the feedback in private where you are not going to be disturbed. Don’t give tasters (in the corridor) before the meeting either, just do it somewhere private and in the right setting.
  • Think about the words you use – words are powerful! ‘How do you think it went?’ is a good opener. Depending on their response you’ll be able to see if they are self aware, or need some more focused questioning
  • What are the key learning points – don’t try and get them to work on everything. Keep it to a few things which they are then more likely to achieve.
  • Follow up support – what are you going to do (in a supportive and developmental way) to help them improve?

Have a great day!


Be first in the observation queue……..

I’ve not known many people who relish those cycles of observations that schools have every term. As a Middle Leader, it is your job to try and demystify the process and create a non confrontational environment that promotes learning and development. You obviously need to observe your staff to know their strengths and weaknesses, and hopefully improve your department’s teaching (and learning). Ofsted will surely ask where they can see very good teaching in your area. But instead of telling your staff you are popping in, or doing an observation for a particular purpose (say, to look at assessment), why not ask them to come and observe you first. You’ll get some useful feedback (hopefully) but it also creates an opportunity to reciprocate. By role modelling the process, you disarm your staff through a ‘carrot approach’, rather than creating a coercive culture which makes people nervous, and therefore less effective.

Take care