Observations are part of the appraisal process and, when carried out as part of a process of constructive engagement within an atmosphere of support and co-operation, can be beneficial.
However, excessive numbers of observations can be counter-productive and do not necessarily lead to better outcomes for pupils. There are other ways of supporting staff development, for example through a school’s CPD programme.
There is no statutory limit on the number of teacher observations but NEU policy is for a maximum of three per year for all purposes, not exceeding three hours in total. An annual limit of three hours’ lesson observation was previously included in the Education (School Teacher Performance Management) (England) Regulations 2006; however this legislation was repealed by the Coalition Government in 2012.