This module focuses on the role of the MSL and the impact that it has for ensuring whole school improvement in mathematics. It uses practical activities and processes to enable you to reflect on your role within the SLT and uses questions to prompt discussions and further reading. All the activities can be used with teams as well as individuals in your school and are devised to enable whole school clarity about the scope and impact of your leadership role.
By the end of this strand you will be able to:
- identify all stakeholders and include them in developing a vision for mathematics in your school
- develop a range of strategies to communicate clearly to all stakeholders
- identify success criteria
- understand the importance of a school vision.
How do I share the school vision statement for maths?
Do I need a school vision statement? What is its pupose?
Successful schools have a clear vision that is a driving force within the school. The vision articulates clearly what is important for pupils within the school and sets the aspirations for all pupils. All activity within the school is developed with a clear purpose that moves pupils closer to the vision. By definition, however, pupils may never quite achieve the complete vision because it is aspirational and is therefore devised to inspire everyone to strive to go beyond the current achievable short term goals. The vision is a long term desirable outcome for pupils. In general, the more people are committed to it, the more schools achieve.
How is this achieved?
If the vision is important for all children and if staff and the wider community share this vision because it will make a difference to children’s lives, then all school activity can lead to the same core purpose and convert next steps into giant leaps.
Activity: Developing a powerful vision
Find the school vision statement and write down any references to matheamtics in its broadest sense - you may wish to look at What is Mathematics?
What does your school want children to be able to do in mathematics?
- does the vision encompass everything you do in school?
- do children aspire to this vision?
- do they understand what success looks like for them?
- do all stakeholders know when achievement builds towards the vision?
- how does this happen?
- are staff passionate about making a difference for all pupils? Does the vision reflect this?
- does your planning support the aspirations you have for your pupils?
- do you want mathematics to be exciting and interesting for all?
Add to, or amend, your vision statement to reflect the passion that the school has for mathematics.
Activity: To what extent does your mathematics teaching support this vision?
In a staff meeting discuss how Mathematics teaching will enable all pupils to achieve success in maths irrespective of specific learning difficulties, disability, gender and racial grouping.
In pairs ask staff to complete the following self-evaluation activity:
Which of these statements reflect the current teaching and learning in your mathematics lessons?
- we use active and involving teaching approaches
- we actively encourage reflection on learning
- we use rich questioning and discussion
- we take time over each new concept
- we focus on using and applying skills in order to extend mathematical knowledge
- we identify misconceptions as starting places for concept building
- we are responsive to the needs of each pupil and allow additional time before moving on when required
- we ensure that children enjoy challenging maths
- our pupils use a range of independent learning strategies
Use the answers to these questions to write a note in your file about the current teaching and learning strategies being used in each classroom. Check these against any classroom observations that you have made.
Review your current mathematics policy to identify whether it reflects current practice.
Does this policy support the revised vision statement?
Is there a timetable for revising the Mathematics policy?
When will it be presented to governors?