How is BlueSky supporting the school?
Saracens High School joined BlueSky Education in 2022, and uses the platform to support teachers and operations staff with appraisal, CPD and evaluation.
Keeping track of training
Matt and his team use the CPD and Training modules in BlueSky to process and approve all staff requests for training, as well as sharing internal opportunities for training.
“We have a quality of education team that is very strong on pedagogy and subject knowledge, particularly science. We also do a lot of work on culture, as this is important to supporting our students, given the demographic of the school.”
“We do a lot of internal training, but we also want people to bring ideas in from outside. Using BlueSky not only helps us to track training requests, but also who is not engaging with professional development, so we can encourage them.”
Linking Objectives to school priorities
“One of the things that BlueSky has allowed us to do this year is link performance objectives to school priorities,” says Matt. “We wanted teachers to have at least two performance objectives that were connected to wider school goals, so we uploaded these and asked our staff to adjust them to align with their own practice.”
Evaluating quality of teaching
“The area that we use all of the time is Observations. We have periodic formal observations, but all of the senior leadership team are regularly walking around the school, carrying out learning walks so that area is probably used every day,” says Matt.
“We see a lot of good things going on in our classrooms, so we make a note on BlueSky and share the feedback with the individual. Our BlueSky account manager created a bespoke form for both types of Observation in the system, which makes it easy to make a note at the time and use that as evidence of people’s development.”
“I usually do it on my laptop but my Vice Principal does it on her phone.”
“Using BlueSky means it is much easier to track feedback from learning walks, and to have that evidence is very powerful.”