Gill Edge, Headteacher
Gill Edge, Headteacher, Killinghall Primary School
Killinghall Primary School in Bradford is a larger than average sized primary school, with 3 form entry.
Gill Edge was Headteacher at Killinghall for 15 years until the summer of 2018 when she retired. The school have been using Standards Tracker since 2016. Gill won a silver award in the Pearson Teaching Awards for Lifetime Achievement in 2018. She has over 25 years’ experience as a Headteacher in a variety of schools, all of which have been deemed ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ under her leadership. Gill has also been Vice Chair of the Bradford Primary Improvement Partnership, Area Lead Headteacher, Local Leader of Education, Chair of the Local Area Partnership and Vice Chair of the Bradford Finance Forum.
“We were using a different online appraisal system for our performance management which was poor. We found it was not user-friendly with the language it used and was difficult to navigate. We liked Standards Tracker because the interface was bright and appealing, it was clearly designed with schools in mind and the navigation around the site was smooth and well explained or signposted.”
Gill also said that they were impressed by the links to teaching standards and other standards which makes it versatile and able to be used not just for teaching staff but for all other roles in the school. She said it was clear to see that uploading evidence/data was easy and the telephone support she received throughout the setup and launch was excellent.
While Gill did look at other online performance management and appraisal systems during her decision-making process she said it was the demonstration that sold it to them due to the fact that all evidence is kept online and in one place and it was cost-effective. The fact it was iPad compatible was a strong point and the ability to write their own bespoke lesson observations and data gathering sheets were key to their decision. She also liked that the time frame for gathering evidence is tailor-made to each school, so the system was flexible to cater for their own needs.
All staff at Killinghall Primary School are using Standards Tracker, teachers, leaders, support staff, office staff and site staff.
“I prefer telephone support, but there is also email and chat now access to customer support. We have been able to access help straight away as this is one of the best features.”
Reporting to governors and Ofsted is one of the areas Gill believes they have saved the greatest amount of time.
“We love the reports element for governors, Ofsted and teacher meetings. We link the analysis of data to our school development plan year on year which is clearly improving the standards of teaching and learning in the school.”
Since implementing Standards Tracker at Killinghall Primary School, teaching has improved, the focus on staff development has improved and it has been easier to tackle poor performance. It has also meant less time used when collating evidence for reports.
Ofsted visited in 2017:
“they were quickly convinced that we were ‘on it’. It was clear that we knew our school well and the strengths and weaknesses of all staff. We were able to demonstrate our proactive approach to improving teaching and learning in bar charts and pie charts. We could demonstrate our effectiveness as leaders across the academic year showing improvements in the percentage of good and outstanding teaching over time.”
Through using Standards Tracker as an ongoing performance management tool assisting with school improvement the use of marking in pupils’ books and the quality of teaching has improved which is aligned to their school development plan.
“We have found the designing of lesson observation sheets and work scrutiny check lists very helpful in focussing on areas that need to be development.”
Standards Tracker has assisted leaders in understanding the teaching and leadership standards and drawing up standards for our TAs and remises staff. It has made appraisal central to school development.