It slightly loathes me to say this but there are some give away clues in schools that let you judge how good they are. It loathes me because these clues are pretty superficial, I’d go so far as to call them daft…but they keep coming up.
Here are *** daft but true environmental correlations I see in outstanding schools.
1) Coats on pegs
As a rough rule of thumb:
50% or less coats on pegs = Requires improvement
around 65% mark = Good
85% + = Outstanding
2) Headteacher’s folders
All the same style, with clear printed labels.
3) A whole school, colourful display
This is one I see least of the three but often there is some kind of ‘wow’ display near the entrance in the school, typically something colourful, and something many, if not all children, contributed to.
I’m not saying these things make you outstanding, that would be absurd, but it’s a manifestation of where a school is because it reflects the school’s standards and your team’s behaviour. Culture is behaviour over time and it’s high performing cultures that make the move from Good to Outstanding. Environmental clues let me judge a school pretty well because: environment is emblematic of culture.
What are your coat pegs, folders and display saying about your school?