Tuesday, 28 March 2006

Principals' Leading

We had a good meeting and workshop day today with cluster Principals. We meet once a term to go over nuts and bolts of management of the PD contract & to share a PD focus. Though not all could attend it was a valuable PD session - I think in the main because it was facilitated by our own Principals for our own group. Some topics and issues directly relevant to our own schools and educational leadership. Thank you Kelvin & Rae for sharing your expertise & experiences. Just some notes from today:

Rae – Feedback on Principal’s PD:

A week in Wellington. Very rigorous, long days. 6 Principals involved as well as facilitators some are Principals who have been through this PD themselves. Recommend for experienced Principals not beginning Principals because it is so challenging. You apply for this PD, keep applying if you are interested and don’t get selected the first time. A range of strategies and focuses that ‘unpack’ what it is to be a Principal. Things such as role plays, presentations, group & individual activities, psychometric tests, input from school community (BOT, parents, teachers), debriefs from PD Facilitators. Completed with a report back, an Individual PD plan and when approved access to further funding to follow up on PD. Short period of ongoing support from Facilitators. Rae found this, though challenging, to be an affirming process. Kelvin supported this by saying this Principals’ PD programme has become more sought after as it has changed from being Principals’ assessment to a developmental model.

LeadSpace has a resource section on Principal Professional Development

Look out for Principals' PD in the NZ Gazette.

Rae also briefly discussed having attended a recent Catholic Principals’ Conference – look out for a new programme called ‘Literature for Life’ along similar lines to ‘Seasons for Growth’ – which focuses on values, support for children dealing with difficult times (grief, change, loss) & implemented through the English Curriculum.

Kelvin shared - Professional Learning Communities, Educational Leadership (from Best Evidence Synthesis), TXT bullying, SPS Literacy Initiative.

Shared readings: What is a Professional Learning Community? Useful to guide us in our own schools and in a sense this is what we are developing through our own cluster. Further resources can be found here - http://www.ncsl.org.uk/networked/networked-research.cfm

“Putting Education Back into Educational Leadership” Professor Viviane Robinson – a summary adapted from BES – (email Rachel for a hard copy – can’t find it on the web J)

Discussed the Ministry of Education Report on Text Bullying & how we can address this in our own schools.
Kelvin also discussed the Literacy Initiative at SPS, as although addressing specific needs, is proving to be a good model for creating a learning community within their school – a model that is based on teacher reflection (literacy logs), teacher conversations and based on analysis of evidence based data focussing on school wide improvement.

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