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Implementing performance management in England's primary schools

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Purpose ? To provide an overview of the various ways in which performance management is being implemented in England's primary schools. Design/methodology/approach ? A combination of documentary analysis, participant observation and audio-taped interviews with primary school headteachers, deputy headteachers, teachers and school governors. Findings ? Information is provided on the following aspects of performance management in primary schools: the meaning and purposes of performance management in primary schools; education and training for performance management; formulation and content of performance management objectives; measuring the performance of heads and teachers; the effects of performance management on teachers' professional development; and perceptions concerning the appropriateness and reality of performance related pay. Research limitations/implications ? Owing to the relatively small number of research participants, the findings might not be entirely representative of the opinions and experiences of primary school headteachers, teachers and governors throughout England as a whole. The value of introducing performance management into primary schools remains an area for further research. Practical implications ? A useful paper both for managers who are reviewing the operational effectiveness of performance management within their own schools, as well as for organisations that are considering the introduction of performance management into their school system. Originality/value ? This paper might be of particular value to national governments and smaller organisations that wish to consider how to evaluate the effectiveness of the various options before introducing a system of performance management into their whole primary school network.

Keywords: Education; England; Performance management; Performance measures; Primary schools

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: July 1, 2005

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