Enhanced school culture, improved teaching quality and better student results – these are the key reasons Woongarrah Public School adopted Quality Teaching Rounds as a major initiative to achieve school improvement.
Woongarrah first implemented QTR through participation in the Building Capacity research project in 2019. Principal Leonie Clarkson said the school had used classroom observations before, yet they lacked the power of QTR.
“We’ve tried different types of observation, but it’s not as explicit as QTR, so this gives us a really good structure that’s tried, proven, tested, evidence-based, research informed. It ticks all those boxes.”
The initiative was so successful, they continued to ripple Rounds across the school.
Leonie said the staff valued that QTR is a collaborative approach with a “high level of trust and safety. Everyone wants to be a part of it now, I’ve got a waiting list,” she said.
It is deeply embedded in the school’s Strategic Improvement Plan, and Leonie has plans for every staff member to participate over the next two years.
Leonie believes QTR is the best strategy to achieve the school’s Strategic Direction 2: Quality teaching of curriculum.
“Our success criteria around that is that we’ve got high impact PL, tick, it’s differentiated, tick, it’s got an impact on the quality of teaching, tick, and we’re going to see that that’s going to then impact on student learning outcomes, tick tick,” she said.
“We’re using the language of quality teaching, we’re talking about what quality teaching is in terms of pedagogy and then talking about what it looks like in the classroom. At the same time there’s that leadership prompt that I love, that whole idea that Nichole can mentor others to mentor others.”
“When they’re in full flight, you hear that language, you hear them making the links. We’ll be doing PL on literacy or whatever and you hear them say, this is where we talk about metalanguage – they make the links.”