Age range: 4-7
Number of pupils: 158
Self-review framework lead: Wendy Collins, Headteacher
Self-review framework completion: About one year from initial evidence gathering to acting on identified priorities.
Using the self-review framework gave staff at Ranvilles Infant School a better view of how well they were doing in ICT and how they compared with other schools. It boosted the confidence and self-esteem of the staff, who found that the framework provided them with a clear and easy-to-follow guide.
“We quickly recognised that we needed more technical support to ensure we got the best from our ICT resources,” says headteacher Wendy Collins.
“We appointed an ICT technician who not only keeps the equipment up to date and working properly but also supports teachers and pupils in the classroom and is involved in staff training. We also recognised the need to continue developing access to our website from home and the review helped us to think about how we could improve parental access through our learning platform, for example to look at pupils’ work and what homework is being set.”
The school’s learning platform has been developed to involve the whole community in school life. For example, many of the children have parents in the Royal Navy and the school has encouraged these parents to send emails, to become involved in aspects of their own children’s work in school and to find out about their progress through the school’s learning platform. The school also invites parents to contribute ideas through online message boards. The use of the self-review framework helped the school with aspects of its broader curriculum.
“The review has helped us to develop our use of ICT to support creative work, for example through digital story telling,” says Wendy.
When staff began the process of self-review they wanted recognition for the work they were already doing. “There was a lot going on – for example, training for all of our staff including teaching assistants. We also provided training for other schools, ran an ICT cluster locally and maintained strong links with our main secondary school – and we wanted to build on this.”
Staff discussions were an important part of the evidence used. Staff meetings were used to discuss the suggested levels with all staff. The school also sought parental views using a questionnaire and through their involvement in workshops during “ICT weeks” in school. Monitoring of classroom activities by the ICT co-ordinator was also considered, as were assessment data, including assessed National Curriculum levels and the pupils’ own self-assessment.
Wendy delegated the process planning and initial evaluation to the ICT co-ordinator, who led the review in consultation with herself and her deputy. Wendy advises other schools that they need a good ICT subject leader to organise and lead the process.
The whole process from planning through to acting on identified priorities for improvement took staff about a year, but the headteacher sees the need to keep ICT developments under continual review. Staff are now already looking again at their progress, following the appointment of a new ICT co-ordinator.