Schools are challenging at times, especially dealing with pupil’s everyday concerns. Head of year jobs responsibilities from my experience as a secondary form tutor are focused on an academic & pastoral role at the school in a certain year age group, and yes working with students that do not want to be at the school.
What is a head of year and meaning?
A teacher with additional responsibility and non teaching jobs in education roles as year head available in independent or boarding sector, international school and large state run secondary & primary schools in inner cities.
Effectively a junior school management pastoral and behaviour leader of a certain year group, such a year 7, additionally some large schools also have assistant year head roles.
An effective year group leader works with the whole school community, attends meetings with heads of department and senior leadership team, communicates with parents and also has contact with external social services. Also, they have several meetings each year with year form tutors and pass on information about students and social events on a weekly bases.
Under their responsibly of a school year leader are safeguarding, pupil attendance, behaviour, wellbeing and academic achievement. Regular contact and meetings with certain parents & guardians and external agencies happen each week at the school, second only to the senior leadership team.
Good year leaders have a large list of assembly ideas and PSHE material for tutor time, although they do also collaborate with the senior leadership team member responsible for these areas.
What makes a good head of year? A person in the role uses a variety of behaviour strategies, reward & sanctions, punishment, well organised that can balance student welfare/wellbeing while fully extending student achievement and progress in the year group.
You identify students that have concerns at school, home, and attendance while developing methods to get pupils to attend school/on time or behaviour adjustment.
Every day you are getting to know the students in the year group in relation to personality, positive or negative behaviour and overall academic progress throughout the year.
There are always one or two pupils that will stretch the school rules and other issues that you will identify very quickly.
Think about strategies to manage individual students case by case to motivate and encourage them, maybe looking at information from a previous year at the school.
In a positive note year heads organise events for the year group to participate, such as year 10 trip to a sporting event or a 3 day trip to an outdoors centre for the whole year 7 group.
My experience during my time as a teacher at secondary school is year head’s are experienced teachers or other person who is supportive to pupils & teachers, finds out facts and solves issues amicably.
School head of year salary For a teacher is basic salary plus teaching and learning responsibility (TLR) point (England) as an extra payment for the role. International school and independent sector provide an additional payment depending on their salary scale.
Without a teaching role a year head at a school is paid only their yearly salary, usually employed in schools with a large student population.
School head of year job description
Job objectives role is to encourage, guide & support pupils wellbeing and academic achievement at school, ensuring students achieve to the best of their ability. Head’s of form year provide pastoral management to pupils working with form tutors, teachers & school management implementing and ensuring policies, behaviour and procedures are followed by students.
Responsible for the standards and day to day management of the student year group, subject to change reflecting pupil, job and school wide policies. Specific year responsibilities at least include:
- Liaise and communicate with teachers, parents and senior management
- Ensures displays & information in the year corridors are of a high standard and up to date
- Contribute to school publications e.g. school’s prospectus, news letters, clubs and sport events
Pupil guidance & support
- Promote the school’s ethos and ensuring school policies are adhered to
- Be available for questions & answers to/from pupils, parents and teachers
- Promote anti bullying and prevention
Pupil behaviour in school
- Support colleagues in a year leader capacity to ensure the teaching, learning and behaviour policy is implemented
- Refer and keep contact with outside agencies in relation to pupil behaviour and welfare
- Issue pupils sanction for more serious school behaviour violations or refer to the senior leadership team.
Monitoring & recording of student behaviour and attendance
Review and implement pupil progress and change
Student social & academic progress
- Organise and lead assemblies in the form year
- Supervise pupil report cards termly
- Takes responsibility for the smooth running and safety of groups during lunchtimes and after school activities
- Organise trips, activities and social events for pupils
- Help with parent meetings and other school events
- Implement and monitor procedures for under performing students and enact progress
- Conduct pupil progress reviews
School monitoring duties
Weekly checks of planning/assessment/ students’ progress in the year group.
Monitoring data and discussing results with staff, teachers and the senior leadership and decide on appropriate action.
Weekly book check/discussion of work and progress with a group of students.
Management of year tutors
- Support behaviour for learning school policy by form tutors
- Induct new staff and students as appropriate in a year role
- Share good practice & experience with tutors and teachers
- Keep tutors up to date of change in procedures and school policies
- Provide and lead training & development of class tutors
- Contribute school wide ideas and new ways of working with students
- Monitor and check targets set in the year group
- Check effective time spent and procedures followed during tutor time with pupils
- Lead the year group of class form tutors in a managerial and pastoral capacity
No doubt you require compiling a head of year action plan for the year group in your school. The plan will be informed from the school and academic departments plan and other areas such as student wellbeing, attendance, behaviour & school policy.
How to become a head of year?
Applying for a head of year job or being invited by the school taking on additional responsibility, ask yourself are you the right person for the role.
Most positions are given to class teachers who have a number of year’s successful teaching in the classroom and been a form tutor. Schools I taught at had a notice on the staffroom notice board advertising positions for additional responsibility; also the school might approach a person to see if they are interested.
Large school student bodies advertise for non teaching year heads, although there is not may of these posts.
Think about interview questions as a year head, continued professional development (CPD) for the role and the amount of work that is required during school hours and after school meetings.
You could go on a CPD course and observe or shadow some at your school to get an insight or show you are interested in the post.