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Department review is a systematic examination and evaluation of the department’s policies, practices, procedures, programmes, resources and personnel with consideration given to national imperatives (e.g. the National Education Goals, National Administration Guidelines) and the general goals, policies and priorities of the school. It is part of a requirement for all schools (NAG 2), it has links with the appraisal/attestation system and has as its fundamental premise the enhancement of student learning.

Departmental review is primarily a data gathering exercise from which information can be analysed to identify strengths and weaknesses with recommendations for reinforcement or development as an aid to change and improvement. Review is also a reporting exercise which documents the outcomes of systematic change and the objectives for further development in the department.

Once established departmental review becomes a cyclical process with links to the departmental strategic plan, annual operation plan, budget, scheme and appraisal and attestation systems, all of which will require action, and ongoing development in order to ensure changing needs continue to be met.


10.1 Analysing the Current Position


10.1.1 Tools and Techniques


These might include:
• Stakeholder analysis – a tool that finds data by involving stakeholders such as students, parents and community groups using surveys, questionnaires and focus group meetings.
• Gap analysis – an approach that describes the present state, defines the desired state, identifies the gaps and determines work to be done to close the gaps.
• SWOT analysis – a technique which lists issues under headings (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) and then prioritises them.
• PEST analysis – an approach that looks at the potential impact and effect of external environments, identifies these environmental factors, and lists, timelines and prioritises resulting strategies.

- from Governing and Managing NZ Schools, part 2, Ministry of Education, 1997.


10.1.2 Analysing Results


Once information has been gathered the department might look for:
• issues that consistently arise in questionnaires, surveys, interviews and discussions
• new patterns and explanations for them
• areas where improvements can be made
• anticipated future issues and trends
• groups of students with particular needs to be addressed
• existing programmes, methods and structures that are functioning well.

- from Governing and Managing NZ Schools, part 2, Ministry of Education, 1997


10.1.3 English Department Review Plan


Area
What
How
Who
CURRICULUM..........
eg: teaching programme year 10

barriers to learning and achievement
..........
.............................

TEACHING
eg: teaching and learning strategies

.............................

Ditto for: assessment, recording and reporting, performance management, resources

10.1.4 English Department Review Findings


Area
What was reviewed
Findings
CURRICULUM..........
eg: teaching programme year 10..........
.............................
Ditto for: teaching, assessment, recording and reporting, performance management, resources



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