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Leadership actions matter: It begins with you!

Tamara Sullivan, Dean of Teaching and Learning Innovation, Ormiston College

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Recent years have brought a crescendo of support for today’s schools to facilitate the development of new skillsets and mindsets that will enable students to thrive amidst the changes and challenges of the 21st Century. The most forward-thinking schools will continually assess the opportunities that emerging technologies bring to the process of teaching and learning.

While some schools embrace and lead the adoption of future focussed pedagogies and improved learning through technology, others struggle to achieve any real traction in their schools.

How can school leaders best transform school wide initiatives to effectively lead improvement and drive innovation in a rapidly changing era?

Leadership actions matter. It begins with you!

If we truly are to respond to the shift required in education in the 21st Century, then the fundamental C.U.L.T.U.R.E of a school must also change. In the most responsive and relevant schools, several characteristics continually emerge as the key for reimagining the learning process to ensure that students are future ready.

So, over the coming weeks, I will be sharing with you some of our top tips for creating a culture of innovation in schools. Please share some of your examples, processes or initiatives so we can develop our own community of best practice!

Tip One

  • Create opportunities for sharing and showcasing of work

In a rapidly changing world, teachers require the opportunities to connect, share, reflect and learn from each other. It is important that schools are nurturing an environment that values and promotes the continuous sharing and showcasing of best practice. This includes encouraging staff to share and showcase work via digital and physical spaces such as online forums, informal sharing of initiatives during face to face meetings, connecting with the wider community using social media, and encouraging professional learning communities so that teachers can collaboratively work together in areas of interest.

One great strategy that I have used to nurture informal sharing is the Whole School Teach Meet Session. `Teach Meet’ sessions are short, informal and relaxed presentations that enable educators to share and showcase teaching and learning ideas. When used as a school based professional development strategy, it promotes professional sharing and encourages teachers within the school to try new initiatives, take risks and learn from each other.

One way to structure a Whole School Teach Meet Session is to schedule presentations into four streams. Each presenter then delivers a short 4-minute informal presentation on their project, idea or initiative. Staff choose to attend one session from each stream.

What strategies do you use to promote the sharing and showcasing of work in your school your school? What has worked and what has not?

I’m Tamara Sullivan and I’ll be attending and presenting at the Leading a Digital School Conference. Feel free to come and say Hi or have a chat – Check out the program @ www.iwb.net.au/digital/program

See part two of this post – https://www.iwb.net.au/leadership-actions-matter-step-two/


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