Does supervision help school leaders during the pandemic? A new research question
The role of supervision in education is described by the National Hub for Supervision in Education as ‘focused on providing support/training for teachers and educators whose role involves supporting children and young people with issues affecting their well-being/mental health such stress or anxiety’. So, it is interesting to ask the question ‘Can supervision help school leaders during the pandemic?’ We have therefore gained ethical approval for a new CollectivED research project. The research is an exploratory study into the role of, and approaches to, supervision of school leaders during the Covid-19 pandemic. It aims to explore how supervision for school leaders have been adopted, modified and experienced during the Covid-19 pandemic. The purpose of the study is to understand the extent to which specialist supervision was able to provide flexible support in an emergency situation, when the challenges faced by school leaders are both unprecedented and fluid.
This research is necessarily opportunistic and will provide a snapshot of supervision practices and experiences during the Covid-19 pandemic as an extreme example of a global challenge facing education. Participation in this research is voluntary. If you have engaged in supervision as a leader or supervisor during this time you are welcome to take part. Evidence will be sought from the UK, and internationally. Two online surveys are now open and will be kept open until the end of July. One survey can be completed by senior leaders in education who have engaged in supervision during the pandemic. This can be found here for completion https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/BSC3MF5. The other survey can be completed by supervisors who have provided supervision to senior leaders during the pandemic. This can be found here for completion https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/B2JVF7X. Follow-up telephone interviews will be conducted for a sample of volunteers.
Rachel Lofthouse is Professor of Teacher Education in the Carnegie School of Education. She has a specific research interest in professional learning, exploring how teachers learn and how they can be supported to put that learning into practice.