Mrs Humanities

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Mrs Humanities shares… Department Handbook Template

It’s that time of year when subject leaders might be considering their department handbooks so I thought I’d write a blog post (I know, first in well over a year) and share the template I use.

Now the purpose and value of a departmental handbook can be debated, but personally I find having one useful to consider my leadership approach, to support and guide my department staff and to demonstrate how the department aligns with the whole school policies and expectations.

The handbook is doesn’t replace conversations or departmental meetings, but is simply a ‘go-to’ guide and reference document for my team. Whilst my team are encouraged to ask questions and converse with me, as busy teachers if can often be difficult to find the appropriate time to ask questions or have conversations, I therefore use the department handbook as a first point of reference for the essential information.

Once you’ve a template set up, each year it is just a matter of editing which usually takes me about an hour or two in the summer term.

Let’s take a quick look inside the template (download available at end of post).

I’ve used heading and sub-heading styles along with a clickable contents page for easy navigation.
Next is an outline of the department essentials – roles and responsibilities, teaching responsibilities, quality assurance, performance management, standardisation and moderation etc.
We then go onto the curriculum with general outlines, approaches to lesson planning and homework.
Then there is an outline of assessment and feedback which provides information and guidance on feedback, reporting and assessed work for the year.
The document finishes with a brief outline of how we implement whole school behaviour and reward systems, an outline of trips and fieldwork opportunities as well as extra-curricular activities provided by the department.

The department handbook template can be downloaded by clicking the link below

Hope you can find the template of use.


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Resource – Department Handbook Template

After writing the post yesterday which gave an insight into my department handbook, I realised that although I couldn’t share OUR department handbook I could make a template for others to use as a starting point.

It’s just a template with some hints to help anyone creating their handbook to get started. Adapt and amend to suit your needs.

I’ve left my departmental feedback strategies in it just in case it can be of use.

To download a copy, click here.

If you have any questions, do get in contact.

Best wishes,