HIPL School self-assessment tool

An optional support tool for school leaders, school leadership teams or all staff to reflect on current professional learning practices against the elements of HIPL and determine next steps.

About the HIPL school self-assessment tool

The HIPL school self-assessment tool is an optional support for school leadership teams and teachers. It is designed to drive improved student learning outcomes by unpacking the elements of High Impact Professional Learning (HIPL) and describing what practice might look like in schools. A HIPL-enabled school environment aligns to the department’s Professional Learning Policy for Teachers and School Staff.

Schools may choose to use the self-assessment tool as part of an inquiry process to identify practices within a school's current approach to professional learning for teaching staff. It will help suggest pathways that will move them towards a high impact professional learning environment. It can be used in flexible ways to meet the development needs of your school – you might focus on just one element or all elements at once. Or you might approach each element individually over a period of time.

The tool functions in a way that is similar to the School Excellence Framework (SEF) through the use of the familiar three levels of the SEF: Delivering, Sustaining and Growing and Excelling. It is supplementary to, not part of, the School Excellence Framework.

This tool supports the identification of next steps for strengthened delivery of professional learning for teachers within a school context. Professional learning within a school context may, of course, be supplemented by professional learning activities, resources, courses and expertise provided by the department to support professional learning for all staff.

The use of the HIPL school self-assessment tool is optional. Schools are not required to use this tool or to report on it.

Elements and related strategies described in the tool have been identified through extensive global research into leading practice and are informed by fieldwork across NSW public schools. Each of the elements of HIPL play a role in professional learning and practice. When delivered holistically they describe the range of practices teachers, including those in leadership positions, can engage in to deepen their expertise in delivering quality teaching focused on improving student progress and achievement.

The self-assessment process may also inform professional learning approaches for some non-teaching roles, for example, School Learning Support Officers, where there is an appropriate connection to student learning.

How to use the HIPL school self-assessment tool

The tool is designed to be flexibly used to best meet the context of schools. School leaders might:

  • use the tool as part of a leadership meeting or planning session and work through one or more elements together
  • allocate a particular element to different members of the leadership team to reflect on and share findings together
  • work through one or more elements with faculties or the whole staff in teams to build understanding across the school.

  1. Read the individual descriptors.
  2. Consider all existing practices related to professional learning within your school.
  3. Determine the statement that best describes current practice/s at your school.
  4. Decide where your school’s practices sit on balance under each element (Delivering, Sustaining and Growing, or Excelling).

Analysing your data and professional knowledge will allow you to identify patterns, potential gaps and priorities and help you frame your next actions. Consider what evidence you have to support your decisions and how this might help you identify next steps.

  1. Use the suggestions below each element (Increasing the impact of your professional learning) to reflect on what your school could do to improve its approach to professional learning.
  2. Use the information on the HIPL website to read more about the HIPL model.
  3. Select and document appropriate strategies for professional learning that can assist in improving aspects of your school’s professional learning practices, aligned to your school’s Strategic Improvement Plan.
  4. Consider how you will evaluate the impact of your professional learning approach on teacher knowledge and skills, teaching practice and, over time, gain evidence of resultant student learning outcomes.
  5. Identify staff, including emerging leaders, to take responsibility for the implementation and evaluation of your approach to professional learning.

New understandings about the school, its community, and teacher and student learning needs will help inform your strategies to achieve high impact professional learning practice and deepen the impact on student progress and achievement.

As part of the work so far you will have defined the goals that you are seeking to achieve. It is important that you consider what structural changes will support a HIPL environment.

  1. Consider how and when you will communicate changes and progress with all staff.
  2. Implement the approach, monitor and gather evidence to inform evaluation.

The building non-teaching capability addendum

The Building non-teaching capability addendum is an optional supplement to the HIPL School self-assessment tool. It focuses on processes within a school that support professional learning that builds the non-teaching capability of staff. This includes professional learning for both teaching and non-teaching staff in schools.

Use it within the inquiry process described for the HIPL School self-assessment tool to ensure that your whole-school approach to professional learning is inclusive of all staff and focused on both teaching and non-teaching practice.

To help us better understand and improve your experience using the HIPL School self-assessment tool please provide us with your feedback by completing this short 5 minute survey.

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