Secondary Schools Conference Leading Change
High Excellence High Equity - Raising the Bar and Narrowing the Gap 560 High excellence OECD average High excellence Low equity High equity 540 Korea Finland New Zealand Canada 520 Japan Australia Mean score on reading scale Norway Belgium Scotland Sweden Switzerland Poland 500 US N Ireland OECD average OECD average Germany England Spain 480 Wales Luxembourg Low excellence Low excellence Turkey High equity Low equity 460 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140 Source: PISA 2009, OECD (a) 200 minus Variance (a) Total variance (between and within schools) is expressed as a percentage of the average variance in student performance across OECD countries. The OECD average is 101. For this chart, the variance is displayed as 200-variance, ie a country with a high relative variance of 120 will appear on this chart as 80 to the left of the chart. High excellence high equity - Raising the bar and narrowing the gap
Ingredients of successful systems from the PISA studies • Systematic and equitable funding • Universal standards – mirrored in the views of students, parents and school principals • School autonomy • Mix of accountability systems – internal and external • Continuous monitoring of standards and quick interventions when failure to achieve them is identified
Ingredients of successful systems from the PISA studies cont… • Creating the appropriate environment to achieve the standards set: • get the right people to become teachers • develop teachers into effective instructors (PD internal and external) • place incentives and differentiated support systems to ensure that every child gets the support that it needs • Focus on the curriculum and introduce skills required for the 21st century • Networking and innovation • Excellence and equity are achievable!
How the world’s most improved school systems keep getting better McKinsey 2010 • Four stages of improvement were identified as well as ‘stage-dependent’ intervention clusers: • ‘poor to fair’ – ensuring basic standards • ‘fair to good’ – consolidating system foundations • ‘good to great’ – professionalising teaching and leadership • ‘great to excellent’ – system led innovation
Professionalism Prescription Every School a Great School Towards system wide sustainable reform Building Capacity National Prescription Schools Leading Reform Awful to Adequate Adequate to Good Good to Great System Leadership
So in summary System improvement requires integration and coordination across every level • Teachers • Deliver classroom instruction • Collaborate with peers to develop, test and share pedagogical practices that raise student outcomes • Engage parents as needed to advance student performance
So in summary System improvement requires integration and co-ordination across every level cont… • Leaders • Define and drive school improvement strategy, consistent with direction from middle/centre • Provide instructional and administrative leadership for the school • Involve school community to achieve school improvement goals
So in summary System improvement requires integration and co-ordination across every level cont… • The ‘middle layer’ • Provide targeted support to schools and monitor compliance • Facilitate communication between schools and the centre • Encourage inter-school collaboration • Buffer community resistance to change
So in summary System improvement requires integration and co-ordination across every level cont… • The centre • Set system strategy for improvement • Create support and accountability mechanisms to achieve system goals • Establish decision rights across all system entities and levels • Build up skills and leadership capacity at all system levels
Australia Austria Belgium (French) Belgium (Flanders) Chile Denmark Finland France Hungary Ireland Israel Korea The Netherlands New Zealand Norway Portugal Slovenia Spain Sweden United Kingdom (England) United Kingdom (N. Ireland) United Kingdom (Scotland) The OECD Improving School Leadership Activity An International Perspective Network of experts International organisations
School leadership: a policy priority The role of leadership has changed dramatically School autonomy: “Running a small business” Administration and management Human and financial resources Accountability for outcomes: A new culture of evaluation Assessment, (self) evaluation, quality assurance, public reporting New approaches to teaching and learning More diverse student populations More emphasis on raising performance of all Need to invest in the knowledge and skills of leaders on the job
School leadership: why does it matter? School Leadership • At the school level, leadership can improve teaching and learning by setting objectives and influencing classroom practice • At the local level, school leadership can improve equal opportunities by collaborating with other schools and local communities • At the system level, school leadership is essential for successful education reform
Segmentation of the Secondary School System in England 100 90 N = 3313 80 70 Low Achieving Below 30% 5+A-C N = 483 60 5+A*-C >=30%, lower quartile value added Underperforming Actual 5+A*-C % 2003 50 N = 539 5+A*-C >=30%, 25-75th percentile value added 40 Progressing N = 1495 30 5+A*-C >=30%, upper quartile value added High Performing 20 N = 696 10 Leading the System 0 N = 100 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 Estimated 5+A*-C % from pupil KS3 data
Networking and Segmentation:Highly Differentiated Improvement Strategies
30% Floor target for 5 A*-C GCSE including English and maths • The 909 floor target schools in 2004/05 = 29% of all secondary schools and the 237 in 2008/09 now = just 8% • A 74% reduction in the number below floor over 5 years
Half of all floor targets schools are in a third of regions – this is based on the 237 in 2008/09 • In this third of regions floor target schools make up at least 10% of all secondary schools • Some regions have less than 5% schools below floor
These Twelve Secondary Schools … Are in the highest category of deprivation (35% or more FSM), yet, they all: • Achieve over 80% good GCSE passes at 16, with a consistent trajectory of improvement • Have at least two recent inspection reports judged as ‘outstanding’ • Received outstanding grades for teaching and learning, leadership and the school overall • Record a pattern of high contextual value added scores from Key Stage 2 (age 11) to Key Stage 4 (age 16)
They defy the association of poverty with outcomes Yet the scale of challenge faced by these schools is considerable: • Higher than average proportion come form poor or disturbed family backgrounds where support for learning and expectation of achievement are low • Many students are subject to emotional and psychological tension and regular attendance is a problem • They are open to a range of ‘urban ills’ that often characterise poorer communities – drugs and alcohol, peer pressure of gangs and fashion and overt racism which tend to attract behaviour which ranges from anti-social to violent. • Getting these students ready and willing to learn is a constant challenge, which the schools strive to meet by providing a better daytime alternative to being at home or on the streets.
21st Century Schools succeed for the following reasons: • They excel at what they do not just occasionally but for a high proportion of the time • They prove constantly that disadvantage need not be a barrier to achievement • They put their students first, invest in their staff and nurture their communities • They have strong values and high expectations that are applied consistently and are never relaxed • They fulfil individual potential through providing outstanding teaching, rich opportunities for learning and encouragement and support for each student • They are highly inclusive, having complete regard for the educational progress, personal development and well being of every student • Their achievements do not happen by chance, but by highly reflective, carefully planned and implemented strategies • They operate with a very high degree of internal consistency • They are constantly looking for ways to improve further • They have outstanding and well distributed leadership
At the heart of this is outstanding leadership practice The Heads of these schools are not by and large iconic – they have taken on challenging schools out of a deep commitment to improving the lot of their students and communities. Moral purpose may be at the heart of it but successful Heads need a range of attributes and skills if they are to succeed in dealing with the challenges presented by turbulent and complex communities. • Clear and unshakeable principles and sense of purpose • Vigilance and visibility • Courage and conviction • Predisposition to immediate action, letting nothing slip • Insistence on Consistency of approach, individually and across the organisation • Drive and determination • Belief in people • Ability to communicate • leadership by example • Emotional intelligence • Tireless energy
A change for the better … Before the change of head teacher, the school: The new head teacher: Faced initial staff resentment with data; there was a belief that the school was happy and did not need to change Gradually changed the culture over a few years Retained what was good Maintained a relentlessly positive attitude showed high energy Was a lateral thinker, prepared to take a gamble Had a very ‘can do’ attitude and said ‘yes’ wherever possible Was prepared to tackle difficult issues such as weeding out poor staff Trusted and motivated staff Was approachable and relaxed Made good use of promotion to bring alienated staff onside Used the wider senior team to involve more staff as leaders • Was comfortable and happy • Had a strong pastoral system although this was reliant on personalities rather than systems • Had little culture of change and improvement • Had a questionable work ethic • Set expectations around happy, well-adjusted students with little discussion of whether they should also achieve higher academic levels • Had a well liked head who was easygoing, genial and supportive but not challenging, often absent and who allowed poor staff to remain in post.
It is not surprising … • … that a number of themes emerged which were common to most or all of the schools. These included, for example, attention to the quality of teaching and learning; the assessment and tracking of student’s progress; target-setting, support and intervention; attracting teachers and growing leaders. • It is important to stress that the success of these schools is due not simply to what they do but the fact that it is rigorously distilled and applied good practice, cleverly selected and modified to fit the needs of the school. The schools do not value innovation for its own sake, but only when it adds something extra. The practices described here are not ‘off the peg’ tricks; they mesh together and work synchronously.
System Leadership Leadership as Adaptive Work Technical Solutions Adaptive Work Technical problems can be solved through applying existing know how - adaptive challenges create a gap between a desired state and reality that cannot be closed using existing approaches alone
The Nature of Adaptive Work An adaptive challenge is a problem situation for which solutions lie outside current ways of operating. Adaptive challenges demand learning, because ‘people are the problem’ [as well as the solution] and progress requires new ways of thinking & operating. Mobilising people to meet adaptive challenges, then, is at the heart of leadership practice. Ultimately, adaptive work requires us to reflect on the moral purpose by which we seek to thrive and demands diagnostic enquiry into the realities we face that threaten the realisation of those purposes. From Ron Heifetz – ‘Adaptive Work’ (in Bentley and Wilsdon 2003)
The Ring of Confidence Circles of Competence
Motion Leadership andPowerful Learning Motion Leadership Powerful Learning
From Outside In to Inside Out • Inside Out Centre Policy School Planning/Organisation Teacher Student Learning Change learning Teaching Strategies Planning/Organisation Policy choices Centre
The School Improvement Planning Framework REGION NETWORK SCHOOL CLASSROOM STUDENT
Secondary Schools Conference Getting into the Classroom
Moral Purpose of Schooling I get to learn lots of interesting and different subjects I know what my learning objectives are and feel in control of my learning I can get a level 4 in English and Maths before I go to secondary school I know what good work looks like and can help myself to learn I know if I need extra help or to be challenged to do better I will get the right support My parents are involved with the school and I feel I belong here I can work well with and learn from many others as well as my teacher I know how I am being assessed and what I need to do to improve my work I can get the job that I want I enjoy using ICT and know how it can help my learning All these …. whatever my background, whatever my abilities, wherever I start from
How the demand for skills has changedEconomy-wide measures of routine and non-routine task input in the USA Mean task input as percentiles of the 1960 task distribution The dilemma of schools: The skills that are easiest to teach and test are also the ones that are easiest to digitise, automate and outsource
“What does it mean to be educated?” at any particular phase of education Being educated at any particular age has four central elements: • a breadth of knowledge gained from a curricula entitlement; • a range of skills on a developmental continuum that reflects increasing depth at ages 7, 11, 14,16, and in many cases, 18; • a range of learning experiences; • a set of key products, projects or artifacts. It also means that students are sufficiently articulate to: • sustain employability through basic skills; • apply their knowledge and skills in different contexts; • choose from and learn in a range of post-14 study (assuming an entitlement curriculum up until then); • draw on wider experiences to inform further learning and choice. Most educational systems use examination results as a proxy measure for this range of quality outcomes
100th percentile 90th percentile Students with high performing teacher 53 percentile points 50th percentile Students with low performing teacher 37th percentile 0 percentile Age 11 Age 8 Effect Size of Teaching McKinsey & Company, 2007:11 Student Performance
POWERFUL LEARNING TASKS Focus on the Instructional Core CURRICULUM TEACHING and LEARNING STRATEGIES STUDENT ENGAGEMENT
What is ‘Professional Practice’? • By practice we mean something quite specific. We mean a set of protocols andprocesses for observing, analyzing, discussing and understanding instruction that can be used to improve student learning at scale. The practice works because it creates a common discipline and focus among practitioners with a common purpose and set of problems. • The real insight here is that you can maintain all the values and commitments that make you a person and still give yourself permission to change your practice. Your practice is an instrument for expressing who you are as a professional; it is not who you are.
I wrote (with Bruce Joyce) some time ago that: Learning experiences are composed of content, process and social climate. As teachers we create for and with our children opportunities to explore and build important areas of knowledge, develop powerful tools for learning, and live in humanizing social conditions.
Powerful Learning … Is the ability of learners to respond successfully to the tasks they are set, as well as the task they set themselves In particular, to: Integrate prior and new knowledge Acquire and use a range of learning skills Solve problems individually and in groups Think carefully about their successes and failures Accept that learning involves uncertainty and difficulty All this has been termed “meta-cognition” – it is the learners’ ability to take control over their own learning processes.
A Secondary Approach for Powerful Learning Learning Intentions Tasks Pace Questioning & Questions Reflection Tactical Strategic Collaborative Group Work Academic Vocabulary
Teaching Skills -Nine Theory of Action Principles • When teacher directed instruction becomes more enquiry focused the level of student engagement and achievement increases • When teachers set learning intentions use appropriate pace and have a clear and strong narrative about their teaching then student’s are more secure about their learning and their level engagement and understanding is increased • By consistently adopting protocols for teaching student behaviour and engagement is enhanced • By consistently adopting protocols for learning student understanding, skill level and confidence is enhanced • If teachers use cooperative group structures / techniques to mediate between whole class instruction and students carrying out tasks then the academic performance of the whole class will increase • When teachers systematically use higher order questioning the level of student understanding is deepened • When feedback contains reference to practical actions student behaiour becomes more positive and consistent • When peer assessment (AfL) is consistently utilized student engagement, learning and achievement increases • When learning tasks are purposeful, clearly defined, differentiated and challenging, (according to the students Zone of Proximal Development), then the more powerful and precise the learning for all students
Reaching for the “Double Sigma Effect” Number of students Achievement of students