Headteacher appraisal: setting objectives

Use our guidance and examples to help you set challenging, SMART objectives for your headteacher to support their professional development and drive school improvement.

Last reviewed on 25 September 2023
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 4661
  1. Know the rules
  2. Understand what makes a good objective
  3. Agree the objectives with your headteacher
  4. Examples of objectives

Know the rules

Requirements for maintained schools

If you're on the board of a maintained school, you must set objectives for your headteacher each year. You'll do this in consultation with your external adviser

Objectives must contribute to: 

This is according to The Education (School Teachers’ Appraisal) (England) Regulations 2012.

Requirements for academies

The above regulations don't apply to academies, though your trust may choose to follow them. Look to your teachers' appraisal policy for guidance, and to find:

  • Who will set the objectives
  • When objectives will be set in the appraisal process

The line manager (in most cases the CEO, executive headteacher or director of education/school improvement) will likely lead the appraisal of headteachers/executive leaders in individual schools. Your scheme of delegation should set out the role of local governing bodies (LGBs) in the