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Schools F Lunk Tests


1 in 4 don’t make the grade


Sunday Times 24 November 2019 Bethany Hiatt


In my quest to support schools in improving their culture, I came across an article chastising the performance of schools.


As with most headlines, it dramatizes the worst-case scenario. A reader would feel compelled to scan “the list” of schools who received a “Needs Improvement” in case their child is attending one of them.


FLUNKED was not an accurate description.

I feel for the staff at schools on “the list”. It must have been quite demoralising.

I believe the headline could have been softer and tell it like it is. More like “Schools need improvement” 1 in 4 need a change in focus.


This allays the community’s fears and perception that their school has sub-standard leadership and teaching staff. No school has this. Every human resource is committed and passionate about the improvement of student education.


However, challenging feedback is the starting line for improvement.

Some schools do need to change their focus from the operational to the cultural.


“Culture eats strategy for breakfast” - Peter Drucker


The culture of a school will determine the performance outcome of all stakeholders.

School Culture is really what we are measuring.


We should be moving towards creating an Optimistic Culture which is agile and collaborative where stakeholders are aligned to the vision and are part of the solution.

Knowing the status of your school culture is important. The data will allow stakeholders to direct resources to save your school from being on “the list”.


Do you have a method for assessing the culture of your school?


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