Thursday, 6 October 2016


School Review

We had day one of our review yesterday. ( I hoped it would only be one day!) a big thank you to our Challenge Partners ( my colleagues Karolina and Peter) for being such a great help and support . Our reviewer, Michael Cain was full of praise for our school. We will be developing the Terms of Reference next week for the new strategic plan which I will put together during this term.

Unconventional families

Forty percent of children under 13 in Australia live in 'non-traditional households'. This is a sizeable demographic change facilitated by a significant longitudinal study. Is Australia set up for this in society? Are our schools set up for this? We probably are and have been ( as teachers) for a long time. We don't have a lot of flexibility for schools to meet the needs of these children in multi-generational households.

Progress Park Brown Hill
Very busy around Brown Hill over the last few months. The council has done a great job revamping Progress Park and now putting in a new concrete footpath between the pub and the swimming pool.

Collegiate Group Conference
Ray McLean from Leading Teams
( Leadership trainer, teacher and author) 
Changing culture ( Culture refers to values, purpose, relationships, behaviour we accept or don't) Ray believes there is a strong link between high performing teams and high level leadership.

Culture links teams and leadership
Teams do meet periodically such as our group.
Ray worked in the system for many years and taught in Donald and spent most of his life in education but also within the military and developed skills in promoting teamwork within the RAAF 
( helping to break down barriers between the sharp end and the blunt end.) 
In the RAAF the focus was on the mechanics of the system. Ray focussed on the dynamics of the teams ( flight crew) 
Education needs to use its own language and not 'corporate speak' when talking about values and culture.
Behaviour in groups can relate to  'mechanical' things in education rather than the dynamic culture. Ray has seen this in principal groups he has worked with before. 'Commitment' needs to be a shared understanding within a group. Sustainable relationships with genuine conversations and agreed behavioural framework are important.
To perpetuate longevity of culture remember: induction, recruiting, retention and exit.( during induction ask inductees what they see- first impressions) As the leader do you model bad behaviour?
Ray worked with the Australian Diamonds and was impressed with their genuine conversations. 
He has concerns that we are calling  feedback into a bad term and into corporate language.
Good leadership empowers people. 
You need to genuinely feel empowered.
Teams need to be useful.
 If it has a clear purpose then it will succeed.
 I can be simple but everyone has to be in the team.
The members of the team need to invest in the team. 
Sharing victories drives momentum.
New networks need to have something to hang their hat on.Ray thinks we should think about when we retire how would we like to be thought of. ' I wanted to be ...that sort of purpose'. (What do you want your personal trademark to be?)

Communities of Practice
Tony Simpson SEIL

Tony promotes the new improvement structure. He says it is driven by research and distributed a cluster based school improvement paper written by Maggie Farrar. We spent this session and subsequent discussion time over lunch brainstorming how to enhance our collegiate group further as a CoP. 

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