Peer Review

The PTSA has led a Schools Partnership Programme (SPP) peer review model with the Education Development Trust in Plymouth. 40% of the city’s schools are involved in cross-phase, cross-MAT peer review. We are always interested in engaging more schools both within Plymouth and regionally, as we know that greater diversity strengthens the quality of review.

The programme, develops a culture of partnership working through school self-evaluation, peer review and school-to-school support. It also fosters research and innovation in line with best practice research and the latest Government White Paper and its commitment to ‘supported autonomy’ (June 2016).

The EDT approach – SPP is a peer review model that builds capacity and capability across clusters so they can gradually take more responsibility for their own development and maturity, and lead their own improvement. Over time local areas will own the SPP model, and continue to develop it so it has impact locally. SPP provides frameworks and tools, training and professional support, and is designed to incorporate and build on, not side line, schools’ existing best practice.

All schools are affiliated to Education Development Trust, giving them direct access to our portfolio of global activities, including our research. For example, in February of this year, SPP schools were invited to a ‘Global Dialogue event’, which bought together leading educationalists from Canada, New Zealand and Australia, to debate the challenges and opportunities brought about by cluster based school improvement. A follow up event will be held in November of this year.

Our impact – SPP schools are reporting that being part of the programme has helped to drive change in their schools by enabling them to raise the profile of school improvement. They are embedding peer review into their planning cycles and including it in performance management systems.

Schools feel that although they worked well together as a cluster already, SPP and peer review has helped them make their conversations more focused and turn them into action.

The SPP approach and materials have provided an excellent framework for developing and supporting some of the key lead schools’ work within the Plymouth Teaching School Alliance. What’s great about the SPP is that you can put together a bespoke peer review that is right for you and driven by your school improvement needs, rather than Ofsted’s.

- Simon Spry - Executive Headteacher -