Met with Liz Morris, EIS District Rep and Alan Blackie to finalise the aganda for the LNCT. LNCT stands for Local Negotiating Committee for Teachers. Its purpose is to enable employers and employees to meet to discuss issues relating to working conditions. Main agenda items will be management time for PTs; Annexe E; Business managers and budget issues. After this a meeting to consider Staff Development and Review (SD & R) interviews with headteachers. There has been a problem with this in the past due the sheer volume of interviews each of the Directorate has to complete – leading to some HTs not be reviewed. We are looking at sharing the review load by involving Education Officers. One of the key criteria for identifying the appropriate reviewer will be the salary scale of the reviewer and the reviewee. Some people feel it is inappropriate for someone on a lower salary scale to reviewing someone on a higher scale. It doesn't bother me but we must be aware of perceptions. As things stand Alan Blackie and myself would do the secondary HTs and four of the biggest primary school HTs; Derek Haywood and Shiela Ainslie would do ten of the medium to large primaries; and the rest of the primary schools would be picked up by the Education Officers.
We considered the competency framework which is being rolled out for all managers in East Lothian Council. The eight competencies use a 360 degree feedback system to gather evidence of competence which is then discussed with the reviewee by the reviewer. I will be putting this on the agenda for our next HT meetings with a view to implementation in January. This system fits perfectly with our commitment to focus upon leadership development, whiilst mirroring the 360 feedback used in Scottish Qualification for Headship.
Had some space in my diary to catch up with some paperwork until 1.00pm when I met Liz Surridge to discuss the probationer programme in East Lothian. It was good to hear that the vast majority of our probationers are making excellent progress – the suppport programme has been even more effective this year.
We also looked at the exc-el website with the intention of making a major source of infromation and support for our probationers. I'm meeting three of our probationers on the 10th October to consider ways we might make better use of the site.
Another hour and half in my office without interuption – what a luxury – almost got to the bottom of the pile.
4.30pm first seminar with our Depute Headteachers. We explored a variety range of issues, including why do we want to be in positions of responsibility in schools; the instruction – automomy continuum; role models and coaching; talent identification; weblogs and most significantly the need for a more rigorous competency model using 360 degree feedback which would enable talent identification to take place on an objective and not “grace and favour” basis – which we had agreed would be the greatest challenge facing us if we tried to implement it in the current system.
The biggest problem with being a Depute is that sense of isolation from others and we agreed that these seminars had the potential to bring people together ona regular basis to share experiences and to develop networks. I certainly enjoyed the opportunity to meet colleagues.