How to plan effective self-evaluation across your trust

Self-evaluation is an essential aspect of continuous improvement. Chris Kirk, director of CJK Associates, shares his principles of strong self-evaluation and what these mean in practice.

Last reviewed on 21 February 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 44176
  1. Consider evaluation from the beginning
  2. Know what you want your evaluation to tell you 
  3. Decide what data you need to collect and when
  4. Make sure your evaluation captures a broad picture
  5. Set targets that reflect your schools' contexts
  6. Make sure the data you collect captures the reality
  7. Try to avoid extra workload when collecting data
  8. Use a qualitative approach when needed

Consider evaluation from the beginning

You might think of evaluation as something that comes at the end of a process or cycle – e.g. reviewing one of your school's development plans at the end of each academic year.

However, to make it effective, you should already be thinking about evaluation at the very start, during the planning phase, and keep thinking about it throughout the whole process.

Know what you want your evaluation to tell you 

At the planning stage, be clear about:

  • The questions you want your evaluation to answer
  • What data you need and how it'll help you answer those questions (see below for more about collecting data)

Once you’ve figured these points out, you can be more confident that your evaluation will tell you if you made progress in the way you planned.

“Before designing a system I’d ask yourself