Experts in leading innovation and change in IT

Maintaining professional networks or a return to competition?

School Leadership and school improvement

With the demise of LA support services, local leadership networks,  budgetary constraints and financial pressures who can we turn to and trust to extend and advance our thinking?

Over the last few years’ collaboration, networking, shared ideas and co-operative practice have dominated the leadership landscape.  The culture of working together, sharing experiences and resources across local area clusters and within authority boundaries has been the norm.  Can this be maintained as we enter a period of significant system change?

During my headship years I welcomed the chance to engage in professional debate with colleagues, I looked forward to sharing in a risk free climate the ‘good’, the ‘not so good’ and the desperately ‘awful’!  The openness and learning we gained from each other was encouraging, motivating and refreshing. It enabled us all to think beyond the constraints and confines of one school.  Shared ideas enhanced personal visions, and whilst remaining firm to personal values, each was able to offer their students the best possible experiences and learning opportunities. In the true spirit of partnership one gets pleasure from giving and helping but also from taking too. This is such a great way to learn, and frankly what we nurture and encourage in our classrooms. What a shame it would be to lose this at a professional level! Remember the old saying: listening never harms any one, it’s how you take it, apply it and use it that matters in the end.  The chance to hear what others are doing, see their work in action and take from it those things which will enhance your personal work is just the best.

So, how can we maintain this type of activity?  How can we ensure that the advice we get is the best for us?  How can we continue to work together for the greater good?

Well, there are still chances out there to join network activities that do just this.  IET Associates are commissioned to organise activities for a group of school leaders who meet termly to share ideas around how technology can be used to support school improvement.  In practice the discussion and debate is much wider than the application of technology.  You can find out more about Leading Leaders here.