Holding your senior leader to account is one of the three core functions of school governance. This function can be carried out in a number of ways, such as asking challenging questions at board meetings. One of the most notable routes is through the performance management of the senior leader.

Performance management is a key tool for the governing board in ensuring its agreed strategy is being effectively implemented day-to-day, and the school is meeting its wider responsibilities. It is not simply a negative process of seeing where concerns may exist. Instead, it can also be a way of recognising success, organising the senior leader’s own professional development, and so potentially contributing to the retention of a key member of staff.   

This guidance is a practical step-by-step guide to the appraisal process. It provides advice on the cycle of appraisal across the year, as well as the formal annual appraisal meeting, and the setting of objectives.

Practical Guide to Headteacher Appraisal

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