It is our belief that over the last few years, our education system has lost sight of one of its strongest and most important assets – its humanity.
Values more akin to the business world have seeped into the system with schools encouraged to see children as data, other school leaders as competitors and results as the ultimate goal of education. We have seen too many school leaders ‘disappear’ with many being forced out, sometimes on the back of just one disappointing set of results.
Consequently, we’ve noticed a growing culture of fear within in our education system. Increased levels of public scrutiny and personal accountability have only served to intensify this. As have new structures and roles which have added unnecessary layers of complexity and ambiguity. Many heads now feel they are in a constant battle to prove they know what is being asked of them in this new era and prove that they are “good enough.”
To make matters worse, leaders are now expected to “do more with less” and improve their schools with depleting school budgets. They are expected to fill the gaps that social workers and family support systems can no-longer provide (again due to budget cuts). Amidst all these challenges, it appears very little consideration has been given to the impact that these additional expectations and pressures have had upon the mental health and well-being of those who lead our schools.
Therefore, it is no surprise that so many Headteachers struggling with the heavy emotional cost of leading and find themselves feeling isolated, stressed, exhausted, out of control and plagued with fear and self-doubt.
I have seen too many teachers and school leaders sacrificing their personal well-being to simply survive in the profession. I’ve coached Heads on the brink of a nervous breakdown. I have received desperate pleas from their partners and witnessed the inhumane treatment of those who have disappeared from the system.
We don’t feel this is the way education should be. Something needs to change. The truth is that the system needs to change and we believe that change can start from within – from within those who lead our schools on a daily basis.
We know from the many years that we have spent supporting Heads and school leaders, that you have the power to change your daily experience of school leadership and take back control of your leadership story. We want to support you to do just this.
That’s why we’re hosting our unique “Education for the Soul” conference on Thursday 18th October 2018 designed to help you develop a new and empowered outlook and approach for addressing the many challenges of being a School Leader today. The conference will enable you to write new and inspired chapters for yourself, your school and those you lead.
The conference will feature expert talks from authors and storytellers such as Jan Blake, Geoff Mead and Belinda Harris, workshops and roundtable discussions, the conference will equip you with the strategies and solutions you need to successfully manage and respond to the complexities and emotional demands of School Leadership.
The agenda has been especially designed to provide you a unique opportunity to:
– Challenge the damaging “narratives” in our education system that focus around competitiveness, data and scarcity – and develop a new and empowered outlook to the challenges you face
– Strengthen your confidence, remind yourself of your value as a school leader and the unique strengths and qualities you bring to the role – and how you can put these to best use in your school.
– Understand the stories that have made you the leader you are today, so that you can determine which serve you best and which you may need to be let go of in your current context.
– Re-connect back with the values that guide your leadership, your passion for education, and your purpose for being a school leader.
– Regain ownership and control of your leadership story so that you can lead in a way that is authentic, fulfilling and achieves your unique vision for your school.
We really hope you can join us for what we hope will be a very special day. If you’d like to do so, please follow the link below to learn more…