A whole school strategy and planning to improve performance in basic skills
A strategy, supported by planning, assessment and evaluation of impact, that gives clear consideration to the provision, enjoyment and performance in literacy and mathematics of all learners in a school is the most effective way of improving standards.
Whole school strategic planning will acknowledge that, while some learners will receive additional specialist support, it is the responsibility of all staff in the school to teach and extend basic skills. The commitment and involvement of the management team is essential. A basic skills strategy may be a separate document or be a part of other written documentation, such as literacy and mathematics action plans and the main school development or improvement plan.
While strategic planning will set out what a school intends to achieve for all its learners in respect of basic skills, it is perfectly acceptable for specific plans to focus on a particular group of identified learners. For instance, a plan may focus on a group of learners where underattainment is a particular issue; this group might be identified through cohort, age, gender, ethnicity or background. What is important is that the focus of the plan has been decided after careful analysis of the school’s current strengths and areas for improvement or development in literacy and mathematics.
‘Working towards achieving a Quality Mark gave a meaningful context to issues that we knew we needed to address.’