In recent parent coffee mornings it has become apparent that some parents were not aware of our strategic approach to academic improvement and to attempt to raise our already high performance levels even higher. As a result I share these systems and strategies.
Overarching strategy - through a thorough self-review and the setting of Key Performance Indicators the respective Principals develop a school improvement plan which is written for each of the three schools at the end of the academic year for implementation the following year. The focus is on academic improvement but as you would expect there are other areas focussed on as we are attempting to build resilience and critical thinking in the young minds within St. Julian´s. These are summarised as follows:
Primary and Portuguese schools – The school improvement plans are based on a thorough self-review, which in turn highlights key areas of improvement which are needed. This is a thorough action plan which outlines what will be done, who will be responsible for it and when it will be completed.
- In the Portuguese school an examination analysis is completed and through this analysis areas of improvement are identified to best prepare our students for their external examinations.
- In the Primary school the plan is based on encouraging a standardised and consistent approach to delivering on the UK National Curriculum through thorough planning, horizontal and vertical alignments and standardised assessments. These are key foci each year to prepare our students for the all-important transitions into Year 3 and Year 6.
Each Principal meets with the Headmaster to provide updates on this plan regularly through the year and in doing so ensures progress to the completion of this plan.
Secondary school – The process is a thorough and comprehensive one and is outlined as follows:
- After each external examination session each Head of Department (HoD) is asked to compile a comprehensive examination analysis report of their subject. Every department writes a detailed review of results and analyses of scores.
- These form the basis for an annual exam report from the Secondary Principal to the HM and Board of Governors. These are collegial yet frank discussions as it is important that these analyses are both accurate and searching, in that we want all departments to be seeking their best results.
- Informed by this examination analysis, an Academic Improvement Plan (AIP) is created which work to strategically address how departments aim to build further on their results. This AIP are a direct response to student performance in public examinations. The AIP highlights areas needed for further improvement and an action plan, which outlines what will be done, who will be responsible for it and when it will be completed.
- At St. Julian´s no academic department rests on their current results (no matter how good they currently are) and intense self-reflection and deep internalised review is actively expected in this process.
- These subject examination analysis and AIP reports are then collected from each department head and in the larger departments compiled as a Faculty report by the Head of Faculty.
- Both the examination analysis and the AIP are critically yet supportively reviewed by the Secondary Principal along with the respective Head of Faculty.
- Finally the Headmaster reviews these alongside the Secondary Principal and these are presented to the governing body in a summarised format.
- Progress in these AIP´s form a key base for regular meetings throughout the year with the secondary principal and the head of each faculty. The Secondary Principal and the Heads of Department have this discussion throughout the year
- Then termly updates to the Headmaster from the Secondary Principal takes place to collectively and collegially support department, faculty self-improvement and therefore whole school improvement.