As the current crop of Catholic School Principals retires there’s concern that no one is stepping up to the plate.
According to Prof Mike Gaffney, Academic Director of National Excellence in School Leadership Initiative (NESLI), it’s an issue that affects the future viability of the Catholic education sector.
The Catholic Schools’ Middle Leadership Program developed by experts at NESLI addresses the necessity of developing new leaders. Delivered over a six-month period, it offers a blended program delivery that focuses on the critical dimensions of effective, collaborative leadership within the Catholic schooling context.
“Australia needs a new generation of Catholic school leaders. These leaders will need to reconcile important issues around what quality education in the Catholic tradition really means. Our current era is politically and economically fraught in terms of funding and enrolments, and the next generation of Catholic school leaders are charged with a very significant mission. It’s vital that we give them the appropriate training and support they need,” he said.
Initially piloted in South Australia, the Catholic Schools’ Middle Leadership Program provides a pathway for succession planning in Catholic schools.
“The work we’re doing here is truly ground breaking. It’s a robust, state-of-the-art approach to Catholic leadership succession which goes far beyond what traditional online or face-to-face programs can do. We integrate real time conversations and video with authoritative research and literature, and most importantly, we bring future school leaders together in an environment that supports them in their leadership aspirations,” said Gaffney.
Susan Young, Assistant Director of Leadership Development at Catholic Education South Australia (CESA), has praised the Catholic Schools’ Middle Leadership Program for shedding much-needed light on leadership distribution and succession planning within the Catholic education sector.
“The Catholic Schools’ Middle Leadership Program helps us to target future professional development to support middle leaders in their current roles and aspirational leadership pathways. It has also enabled us to construct a leadership program that finds deep connection with our Catholic context, our leaders and our unique system of schools,” she said.
More information about the program is available here: https://www.nesli.org/catholicmiddleleadersprogram.html
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