Governing Boards are required carry out an Annual Performance Management Review for headteachers. The deadline for completion of the headteacher’s Performance review is the 31st December in each year. Depending on your Performance Management Policy, you must appoint two or three individual governors to act on the board's behalf.
NB: If yours is a Voluntary Aided school you should ensure that if you appoint two governors then one must be a foundation governor and if you appoint three governors then two of them must be foundation governors.
There are three essential elements in the Headteacher Performance Management cycle: the planning meeting, monitoring and support and the review meeting. The Governor Reviewers should be actively involved in all stages.
Governing Boards have a duty to appoint an external adviser for the purposes of providing them with advice and support in relation to the management and review of the performance of the headteacher. They are not however a reviewer, their role is to advise those who are. The relevant governors must meet with the external adviser and the headteacher to discuss and determine the headteacher's objectives and performance criteria for the coming year (the planning meeting).
The headteacher’s objectives should be agreed between the headteacher and the appointed governors, with advice from the external adviser. Objectives may relate to school leadership and management, pupil progress or any other key area identified in the School Improvement Plan. If no agreement is reached, the relevant governors must set the objectives for the headteacher. The agreed or set objectives must be recorded in a written statement. If the objectives have been set, rather than agreed, the headteacher may add written comments to the statement.
At or near the end of each cycle, the relevant governors and the external adviser must meet with the headteacher to review his or her performance against the performance criteria specified in the statement, and determine the recommendation on pay progression (the review meeting). The review meeting should be combined with the planning meeting for the next cycle, wherever practicable.
Within five days of the review meeting, the relevant governors must record in draft in the statement the outcome of the review, together with any recommendation on pay progression, and pass the draft statement to the headteacher. Governing Bodies must provide headteachers and teachers with a right of appeal against any of the entries recorded in their statement. Any appeal against any part of the process will be considered using the school’s Employee Grievance process.
Within 10 days of the review meeting, the relevant governors must prepare and sign a final version of the statement and make it available to the headteacher, who may add any comments. The signed statement must then be passed to the governing body and a copy of the statement must be given to the headteacher. Subject to the outcome of any appeal, the contents of the statement will be deemed to reflect the results of the review meeting.
Once the Annual Performance Management Review process is complete, there is a further requirement for the Pay Review Committee to consider whether your headteacher will be awarded an incremental point. Governing Bodies may award a maximum of two incremental points where there has been sustained high quality of performance, taking into account the performance objectives.
In some schools the headteacher may have reached, or will shortly reach, the top of the seven point Individual School Range (ISR) which would have been agreed when they were first appointed.
In the first instance, Governing Bodies should confirm the ISR to which the headteacher was appointed. If the headteacher has reached or is nearing the top of that range, Governors may then consider whether they wish to review and possibly extend the ISR. NB: From September 2011, the ISR can only be extended within the headteacher group range (group size) for the school. This is clearly stated in the School Teachers Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD) Paragraph 12.2.3. Details of how to determine the group range of the school are outlined in the STPCD (Paragraph 8).
There is no requirement for Governing Bodies to extend the ISR, but reasons for doing so may include the wish to retain an existing headteacher or where the Governing Body judges that there has been a significant change in the headteacher's responsibilities.
It is recommended that the ISR is reviewed at a meeting of the Pay Review Committee (no members of staff should be present at this meeting) and a recommendation then made to the Personnel Committee and finally, for the proposal to be ratified at a Governing Body meeting. N.B. Governing Bodies should consider whether there are conflicts of interest. It is recommended that the new ISR is recorded in the Governing Body minutes and that the Teachers Pay and Pensions Team are notified.
In certain circumstances, the Governing Body may award discretionary payments. These circumstances include the following; where the school is a school causing concern; where the Governing Body considers that the school would have substantial difficulty filling a vacant head teacher post, or where the Governing Body considers that the school would have substantial difficulty retaining the existing headteacher (STPCD Paragraph 12.5). However, the total sum of payments in any school year must not exceed 25% of the amount that corresponds to the headteacher's point on the leadership pay spine (STPCD Paragraph 12.4.2).
Governors should note that this provision replaces the previous arrangements whereby if the exceptional circumstances criteria were to be applied, the revised maximum of the ISR could be extended to (but not exceed) the top of the second head teacher group range above the established one for the school.
A table showing the Salary Ranges for schools of each group range and other related aspects is available in the School Teachers Pay and Conditions Document.
If you have any queries about the headteacher’s performance review process please contact Bucks CC Teachers Pay and Pensions Team 01296 382970
Performance Review Governors should undertake the necessary training and preparation in advance in order to undertake the role effectively. Training is available from Governor Services as part of the Governor Development Programme.