Headteacher appraisal: step-by-step process and templates

Use our guidance for leaders in multi-academy trusts (MATs) to help you manage the appraisal process for headteachers in your schools. Download our templates and checklist so you can be confident you've got everything covered.

Last reviewed on 26 October 2023
School types: AllSchool phases: AllRef: 44652
  1. Check and understand your process first
  2. Checklist: the full process
  3. Stage 1: before the review meeting
  4. Stage 2: hold a pre-meeting with the external adviser
  5. Stage 3: pre-meeting between the headteacher and external adviser
  6. Stage 4: headteacher's review and planning meeting
  7. Stage 5: after the headteacher's review and planning meeting
  8. Only share the report with people who need to see it

Check and understand your process first

Unlike maintained schools, you can set your own appraisal process in your trust. However, to clarify what this is, check:

  • Your scheme of delegation to find out who's involved. For example, what's the role of your local governing bodies (LGBs) and trustees?
  • Your appraisal policy, is it a trust-wide or school-specific policy?
  • The terms and conditions in your headteachers' contracts

Does the STPCD apply to any of your headteachers? 

If any of your headteachers are employed under the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD), you must follow the process we outline below, which is based on The Education (School Teachers’ Appraisal) (England) Regulations 2012.

The article is also based on advice from our associate education experts and guidance from the DfE on teacher appraisal.

If you do set your own procedures, use this article as best practice guidance to follow.  

Use this checklist to walk you through the whole process. The chair of the appraisal panel can use

The Key has taken great care in publishing this article. However, some of the article's content and information may come from or link to third party sources whose quality, relevance, accuracy, completeness, currency and reliability we do not guarantee. Accordingly, we will not be held liable for any use of or reliance placed on this article's content or the links or downloads it provides. This article may contain information sourced from public sector bodies and licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.