PAPER 4: Deputy Headteacher In Charge of Studies Questions and Answers by NESA


QUESTION 1. Before discussing the school improvement planning steps, what are the key planning questions that the planning process should answer?
a. Where do we stand now? To get answer to this question, you do a situational analysis (collection of different school related data).
b. Where do we want to be in the future? To answer this question, you need to set the strategic direction of the school (vision, mission, values, etc.)
c. How will we get there? To answer this question, you need to identify key priority areas, set goals objectives, strategies and activities.
d. Are we getting there? To answer this question, you need to implement the identified strategies and activities and conduct monitoring.
e. Have we reached our destination? To answer this question, you need to conduct evaluation.

QUESTION 2. Identify steps in the school improvement planning process.
Forming the school improvement planning team
The appointment should follow the normal procedures and involve all categories of stakeholders: teaching staff, SGAC members, students, local community representatives, persons with special needs, local development partners, local government officials, faith leaders, among many others.
Selection and appointment of members of planning team should be based on criteria such as expertise, knowledge of education in general and the concerned school, interpersonal relationship skills,
integrity, social influence, etc. The composition of the team should be close to gender parity.

Situation Analysis (data collection and analysis, SWOT analysis)
This step will provide more insight in the current situation of teaching and learning at the school. In the situation analysis, we list what is already being done in the school and what should be preserved.
The situation analysis includes collecting data in your school. The school data are grouped in five categories related to the school leadership standards: creating strategic direction, leading learning, leading teaching, managing the school as organization and involving parents and the wider community of the school.
Problem Identification and identification of root causes
The situational analysis has given us information about the current status of the school and the SIP planning team knows the areas for improvement.

Setting the goals and objectives
Goal setting is the process of deciding what you want to accomplish. A goal is the result toward which efforts are directed. The identification of goals helps the team to understand what the challenges are and how these can be translated into goals.
Objectives, on the other hand, are specific and measurable statements that describe the immediate changes. Objectives can relate to teaching, student attendance, teaching and learning resources, school management.
Setting Priorities
The most urgent and important areas that the school want to focus on in order to achieve the goal are referred to as priority areas or strategic issues. The priority areas are set based on the gap identified between the situational analysis and the desired future situation as shown by the school vision, mission as well as goals and objectives for each problem.
Identification of Actions
When we have reached agreement on the priority areas, we move to the next step which is to identify actions. For each priority area, you will need to:
Write a problem statement (based on the situational analysis)
Restate the strategic goal
Restate strategic objectives that will be achieved to goal make the goal achievable,
Identify activities, inputs, output, and outcome
Decide on the targets, indicators, timeline, responsibility, etc.

QUESTION 3: Discuss the Important techniques for collecting data.
Observations: observations can be used in classroom visits when you want information of how effectively teachers apply an active teaching methodology.
Documentation: This includes school records and reports, administrative databases, training materials, school statistics, performance data, non-confidential school community information, and staff progress reports, legislation and policy documents.
Checklists: if you want to check the availability and use of teaching aids like science laboratory materials, ICT infrastructure, library books, etc.
Interviews: interviews can be used when you want to be informed on how students appreciate their welfare at school or when you collect views of parents on how their students learn.
Written questionnaires: if you want data on how teachers view their working conditions, you may administer questionnaires. Questionnaires can also be useful to collect systematic information from other groups such as learners, non-teaching staff and local community members. By using questionnaires, you can ensure that all respondents have an equal voice.
Focus group discussions: A focus group discussion involves a group of 8 to 12 people to discuss a subject under the guidance of a facilitator. For example, students discuss the difficulties they have in mathematics, or teachers discuss the reasons for dropouts.


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