hope alive today, for
our children’s hope of a
Our Blog Archive is organised into 8 key themes to make it easier for you to find posts on areas that are of particular importance to you:
As you already know, being the head teacher of a school is tough. It’s often hard to find balance and be a well-rounded human being when you’re always the one that is giving. Many a time, it can feel as though if you’re not physically seen to be helping and solving problems, then others will wonder what on earth it is that you are doing with your time! With the ever-increasing pressures and demands that are made upon school leaders, it is hardly surprising that sometimes your head can feel so full of other people’s voices, concerns and worries that it can feel impossible to think straight.LEARN MORE
After the end of each term or particularly at the end of every year, I think we can all find ourselves very much in a reflective mode. Now it won’t surprise me, if in your reflections, you ponder on how tired and exhausted you have felt at the end of each term. I know back when I was a School Leader – that reality was all too familiar. In education, we tend to slog through the term – seeing the holidays as our chance to get the renewal we need that can sustain us through the year.LEARN MORE
Stepping into a new school leadership role can be one of the most exciting things you’ll ever do – but it can also be one of the most challenging and the first few weeks can feel daunting as you adapt to the demands of life as a school leader. To help you manage the transition and help make this time a little less overwhelming, I’ve decided to put together 5 key tips for all those who are embarking on a new school leadership role.LEARN MORE
There is all kinds of advice out there about what makes a good school leader, from certifications to strategies to taking the latest seminar. But what so many people miss out on what is actually the most fundamental elements of great school leadership – hope. You would not have reached where you are now if you didn’t know how to harness the power of hope. Hope not only in yourself, but also hope in the sincerity of your vision and the future that you are seeking to create for the children in your school. All school leaders need hope. Not just a spoonful of it – bags of it!LEARN MORE
I have been a Headteacher in a North London Primary school for 13 years now. In that time, like most Heads – I’ve had to endure some very challenging circumstances, with the rise of personal accountability, frequent changes to the curriculum and depleting school budgets in our schools.LEARN MORE
It is my belief that more Headteachers would remain in the profession if, on appointment, it was made explicit to them the link between school improvement and their own personal development. Unfortunately, however, in today’s world of high public scrutiny and personal accountability, they are not and as a result far too many Heads become victims of stress and burn out, unable to cope with the intense psychological and emotional demands of the role.LEARN MORE
Like all top leadership positions, school leadership and headship in particular brings with it the type of power that isolates: positional power. The higher up you are in an organisation, the more your positional power means that you not only have increased pressures and responsibilities, it also means an increased distancing in relationships. Learning how to balance the need for human connection, with the need to maintain the integrity of the leadership role, is a challenge many school leaders face. Individuals have to decide where their personal and professional boundaries lie and the degree to which they will give of themselves.LEARN MORE
Being the Head of a Mutli-Academy Trust (MAT) is a role that still feels new to many and as a result many Exec Heads and CEO’s are still struggling to understand what the role is really asking of them. However, we do know a few things for sure. We know that increasingly, in these roles leaders are having to find ways to: Cope with increased levels of ambiguity and organisational uncertainty as they steer individuals, teams and schools towards a shared vision. Broaden their networks within and outside of traditional educational circle. Stay abreast of organisational system change and dynamics and their impact (for better or worse) on both staff and pupil outcomesLEARN MORE
Our thoughts influence how we feel and our feelings affect how we behave. It is only when we are listened to empathically that we are able to unpick how one affects the other. We make links between feelings and thoughts all the time in our daily lives. As a school leader, you do this constantly and probably do not realise the impact that the inter-relationship has on your levels of confidence and performance in the role.LEARN MORE
How many times as a school leader have you experienced a crisis of confidence? There may have been times when you’ve made a difficult decision and others have doubted you, or days when your confidence has been knocked by a series of uninvited criticisms. Unless your coated in Teflon, I’d guess you’d say incidences like these, that bring about feelings of self-doubt and worry are regular occurrences. They appear to come with the territory of school leadership. Yet, as common as they might be, it is essential that as a school leader you find ways to overcome these negative feelings when they arise.LEARN MORE
I am the proud Headteacher of Parklands Primary School. We are situated in the middle of one of Europe’s largest council estates. We are the most deprived Primary school in Leeds with 82% Pupil Premium Children ….. but what does that mean? No hope? No aspirations? Poor exam results? A poor Ofsted report? On the contrary…. 82% Pupil Premium means we have to get it right for these children; we have to inspire, we have to sell the dream, we have to love, respect and make sure every child is valued, listened to and believed in….. and at Parklands we do just this.LEARN MORE
As a coach, I trust myself to be able to create the type of 1:1 spaces where it is safe for the soul to be seen.
Spaces where School Leaders can come out from behind their leadership masks and explore what it means to live lives of authenticity and integrity, amidst the challenges and complexities of day to day school life. However, in hosting the ‘Education for the Soul’ Conference, I faced a new challenge.