Structural Innovations

The management team (heads and coordinators) together with the board of governors has expedited a number of measures to reinforce and improve existing structures. The structures facilitate a more efficient and more transparent implementation of a wide range of different assignments and projects with the overall aim of creating a lateral chain of responsibility.

All the structures outlined below support the three key points for development and should ensure greater effectiveness as well as increased participation and involvement.

 

  1. Assistant coordinators
  2. Coordinators for specific areas
  3. Department heads
  4. SMART groups
  5. Teaching development coordinators
  6. Teaching assistants – essential support
  7. Beratungsquadrat – support and counselling team
  8. Coordination of extra-curricular sporting events
  9. Supervision, intervision and coaching (external support and counselling)

 

1   Assistant coordinators and coordinators for other areas

All department heads have an assistant coordinator to support them in their work and stand in for them in case of indisposition. The Primary School has a coordinator to organise the timetable and arrange substitution.

 

2   Coordinators for specific areas

There are coordinators for SEN, Interns and for PQM (teaching quality management).

 

3   Department heads

Leadership teams in all departments take care of the functions and areas of responsibility indicated above. Heads of department are allocated a free period to deal with this, as well as an extra monthly allowance.

 

4   SMART groups

The introduction of SMART groups at the DSL at the start of the 2017/2018 academic year school has led to development becoming an integral part of teachers’ responsibilities. Everyone is responsible for school standards.

The staffing measures outlined below aim to facilitate general and specific school development work in a sustainable and effective framework. The following guiding principles apply to the introduction of SMART groups at the DSL:

  • to professionalise the school’s development work
  • to increase the efficiency of the process
  • to involve as many colleagues as possible in the overall school development process, including agreement on common objectives; pupils, parents and third parties may be involved where necessary
  • to make this work an integral part of teachers’ duties
  • for the PQM and school management to monitor and support this process and safeguard standards
  • to have a flexible and user-friendly strategy for development in the context of the changes taking place at the school. The strategy will be reviewed annually
  • to be able to use a platform for a collaborative approach in order to produce consistent and sustainable development projects
  • to enable a more precise assessment of pupils’ performance

 

This approach also offers teaching staff and school management the opportunity to present their work to the school community in a positive way to deal with related enquiries and, last but not least, gain recognition for this important aspect of their professional responsibilities.

 

5   Teaching development coordinators

Two members of staff, each representing the Secondary School and the Primary School have been coordinating the teaching development process since the start of the 2018/19 academic year. They prioritise school development goals and agree on key points for TRIANGLE team peer lesson observation in conferences with staff. There is an observation phase every half year and the results are evaluated in the teachers’ conferences. Once a year the coordinators attend a regional ZfA training course and exchange ideas with other colleagues in the region.

 

6   Teaching Assistants

Since the start of the 2017/2018 academic year a team of qualified teaching assistants has coordinated the essential support required by pupils with special needs. It is therefore possible to offer targeted, flexible and emergency support, in close consultation with the class teacher at all times. Existing individual support and special measures in and outside the classroom will continue to be paid for by parents but organised by the school as the employer of the staff concerned.

 

7   Beratungsquadrat (support and counselling team)

In the 2018/19 academic year the four areas of support offered at the school (school psychology, social education, safeguarding and special needs) grouped together in one team, the Beratungsquadrat, which coordinates the planning and effectiveness of measures as well as communication among the four areas https://www.dslondon.org.uk/learning/advice-support

 

8   Coordination of extra-curricular sporting activities

A part-time member of staff has coordinated all sporting fixtures (home and away) since 2019/20 in order to do more justice to this important area of school life. With our new sports hall and ballet hall, we now have excellent and spacious facilities.

 

9   Supervision, intervision and coaching (BERATUNGSQUADRAT external Support and Counselling)

The DSL started involving external consultants in development processes and committees in the 2018/19 academic year. In the first year the work of the extended school leadership team was professionally supported in order to strengthen cooperation and make it more effective. The Beratungsquadrat has been assisted by regular supervision since 2019/20. The teachers also receive regular input and advice as well as guidance on dealing with difficult situations where necessary.