Councillors back plans to empower head teachers and schools

Aberdeen City Council today (Thursday 16 January) approved proposals that will empower head teachers and schools to seek improvement through self-evaluation.

The Education Operational Delivery Committee voted to approve the proposals including a self-evaluation document which will be completed and submitted to Education Scotland as and when required.

The plans have been developed as a result of the 2018 The Education Reform Joint Agreement between Scottish Government and Local Government which made a commitment to develop guidance, without the requirement for legislation, on the context of empowerment and how a headteachers’ charter was to be supported.

As part of the devolved school management powers, a self-evaluation resource was designed for local authority staff to use to engage in an evidence-based analysis of what is working well in relation to school empowerment and what needs to improve to have greater positive impact on outcomes for learners.

The Council’s Education Service is currently developing a suite of guidelines and advice which will help promote transparency, consistency and equity in funding for schools. These are likely to be submitted to the next committee meeting in May.

Councillor John Wheeler, the committee’s Convener, said: “This is an important step forward in empowerment which allows head teachers greater autonomy in leading learning communities in making changes and improvements and becoming more actively involved in the wider decision-making of the Council with regard to education”.

The plans will also help empower teaching staff to continually improve practice while also encouraging professional dialogue, supporting career-long professional learning and the use of research and evidence-informed practice.