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Showing posts from September, 2014

Overnight Success?

Had a week of highs this week. The week started off in school on Monday working with staff and pupils of both schools I lead. Then on Tuesday I was off to the new Scottish for Educational Leadership (SCEL) headquarters in Glasgow for latest network meeting with colleagues on the SCEL Fellowship programme. We started with a meeting and discussion with Clive Dimmock from The Robert Owen Centre of Glasgow University. Clive spoke to us about his take on whether high performing leaders are born with the necessary dispositions required for such leadership, or if they could be trained into these dispositions. An interesting discussion then ensued in which we acknowledged the complexity of school leadership and the demands placed upon headteachers every day. We also recognised those tacit skills and attitudes that school leaders develop over time, and with experience, that contribute to high level leadership practices. My own thought is that many of the skills required for good or very good l…

SCEL and I

Over the last six months I have been a participant in the inaugural Fellowship Programme being run by SCEL, the Scottish College for Educational Leadership. SCEL was set up following the publication of 'Teaching Scotland's Future' authored by Graham Donaldson, and published in early 2011. The setting up of a ' virtual college of school leadership' was contained in the final recommendation, number 50, of Donaldson's report. The report considered in detail ITE, initial teacher education, and continuous career-long professional development of teachers once trained. Towards the end of his recommendations he considered the provision of professional development opportunities for experienced headteachers. Recommendations 48-49 looked at further development for headteachers and stated that 'a scheme for national leaders of education should be developed to enable experienced high performing headteachers to contribute to system-level leadership of education in Scotla…

Professional Learning: A Tale of Two Meetings 2/2

In my last post I was writing about the first meeting of two I took part in last week. The second followed hard on the heels of the first and involved in travelling across Edinburgh by car during the rush hour. I thought this might be easier now that all the tram works were complete and in place. It wasn't!

Anyway, I arrived at my next destination, Easter Road the home of Hibernian football club, for what was billed as 'Education: The value of making mistakes: Helping children and young people develop a growth mindset'. The main speaker was Professor Carol Dweck from Harvard University in  the USA. Carol is famous for her work on, and identification of, 'fixed' and 'growth' mindsets and their respective impacts on learning and development. I have read a couple of her books and have seen her before at the Scottish Learning Festival and through various YouTube clips. I am a fan, so when I heard she was back in Scotland, at the invite of the Winning Scotland F…

Professional Learning: A Tale of Two Meetings 1/2

Earlier this week I attended two professional development events, and had two different experiences. As someone who believes every experience is a learning experience, I certainly achieved some new learning at both these events, but perhaps not as I expected. The event that I thought would provide me with the most new learning was not the one I predicted. I never cease to be surprised by events such as these and how they can move your thinking and practice on in unexpected ways. But like all these events, some are better than others.

Both this week's events took place in Edinburgh. The first was scheduled as a meeting at the HQ of the General Teaching Council Scotland (GTCS). This was the first meeting of a new Research Education Group (REG) that had been put together by the GTCS, and by Dr Zoe Robertson in particular. Zoe is currently the Acting Head of Education Services at GTCS following the departure of Gillian Hamilton to take up the post of Chief Executive of the Scottish Co…