Progress reviews: A whole school model for monitoring


I thought I’d share what my school has done regarding monitoring. To be clear, my school is not Ofsted driven. It’s not interested in jumping hoops or catching people out. Over the year, all leaders are required to complete ‘progress reviews’. They focus on a year group each time. They are spaced throughout the year and each year group has two over the year.

It has its limitations, it’s not perfect but I truly believe it is the best model I have seen so far. It’s humane and I think it is fair.

The model is a holistic one.

 What is happening in our school/classes/lessons that can make a difference to our students’ progress in learning? What can we ‘see’ that can contribute to this?

The following are things that  our school has decided can be looked at that may or may not contribute to progress in learning at some point:


  • Orange stickers with formative comments
  • Student responses
  • General marking
  • Meaningful self/peer assessment
  • Attitude to learning
  • Challenge
  • Homework
  • Progress

There are no ‘measures’ or criteria for each area other than that the reviewer looked at something and whether it could be seen as exemplary practice useful to share with others. The reviewer may or may not write a comment about each in the available box. They don’t need to look at all of these, it could be one, a few or all. It is down to their professional discretion.

The reviewer has the following that they can use to collate information:

Visit to classroom *     book look *     student voice *     SMHW *     4matrix *

The reviewer can choose to look at all or just one of these. There is no set format however in my experience, cross referencing these is important. For example if I look at the student attitude to learning data and then I speak to students, they should correlate. I could then look at their book and see whether their book shows a good attitude to learning or not. This triangulation is important and can confirm as well as highlight issues.

The reviewer collates information from these sources. There is no judgement or tick sheet criteria on the ‘level’ of what they see. It is a record of what has been seen.

The single most important aspect of the model is that is completed by the nearest line manager to you (not by SLT other than if they are your nearest line manager, for example a middle leader) AND it is dialogic with that person. It is not done ‘to you’.

So, before the form is completed the reviewer and reviewee meet to discuss it all. It may be that the reviewer has questions to ask, to clarify what they’ve seen. Nothing is written without the evidence and discussion around the areas focussed on.

The pair can then discuss what might be the examples of good practice and any areas that need to be focussed on. Both of these are optional.

The idea is that from review to review any common issues can be identified and that in the second review for that year group, the teacher has the opportunity to work on any issues and progress in these areas will be highlighted in the comparison of the two reviews.

Please feel free to ask questions.


7 thoughts on “Progress reviews: A whole school model for monitoring

    • SMHW is ‘show my homework’ which is an online system for setting homework. We can see what any teacher has set and how frequently it is set etc

      4matrix is our data analysis software so we can look at student data in different ways e.g are students progressing? Are there any groups that need support? Etc

      Both are commercially produced programmes.

      • This is a really interesting idea. Can you tell me how much time if any additional is provided for the staff. How to the senior team then get to hear how thighs are going well or need to be supported?

      • Hi Rachel

        We have the ‘usual’ leadership time allocated on our timetables and we are also not a meeting heavy school so it can be done after school. Larger departments split it between those with responsibilities.
        We send copies of paperwork to our SLT line managers and it is also discussed during line management meetings.

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