Leadership‘Leadership is a process of adaptation and of evolution; it is a process of dynamic exchange and the interchanges of value. Leadership is a deviation from convention’ (Barker, 2001).
We believe strong leadership within education is critical to establishing a culture of exceeding expectations, for teachers and students alike. In our approach to developing powerful educational leaders, there is no boundary on development. Every staff member at Parkville College, including our Executive Principals, undertake continual leadership development.
Parkville College models a clear and consistent teaching method, throughout all seven locations. Consistency allows students and teachers alike to feel comfortable and calm within their surroundings, giving them the best chance to succeed. The way, in which we achieve consistency throughout Parkville College, begins with a strong, consistent leadership team.
Two-way communication between staff, students, parents or guardians and the community is imperative in our setting. By providing clear consistent lines of communication, Parkville College staff and leaders visibly model exceptional practice in the classroom.
People Measures Program
At Parkville College, we believe leadership is a journey, not a destination. With that in mind, Parkville College has identified an initiative for staff to develop further understanding and gain insight into the research and competencies within leadership. The People Measures Program provides evidence-based research and solutions, conducted by a group of organisational psychologists and developmental experts. During the program, Parkville College staff are involved in intensive professional development workshops and conferences, that focus on practical assessment and frameworks, leading change, talent management, personal branding, resilience theories and executive coaching.
The People Measures Program identifies eight essential competencies for future leaders, which Parkville College adopts in practice:
1. Persuading and influencing
At Parkville College, we motivate staff to lead by example, and model exceptional practice.
2. Leading and supervising
At Parkville College we mentor staff, model exemplar teaching and trauma-informed practices, and supervise teachers by providing descriptive feedback.
3. Working with people
As future leaders, we value equality and are determined to provide fair and equal education opportunities to everyone.
4. Coping with pressure and hindrances
Working in a challenging environment, we provide personal development and wellbeing practices to enable all staff to manage pressure and setbacks.
5. Creating and innovating
We focus on an innovative education approach beyond the classroom, using relevant and evidence-based research to model successful practice.
6. Adapting and responding to change
At Parkville College, we create adaptive leaders that are able and willing to respond to change.
7. Planning and organising
Part of trauma-informed practice is ensuring consistency in our classroom approach and in our relationships with students; hence all Parkville College staff maintain effective planning standards, providing consistently engaging education for all students.
8. Adhering to principles and values
Leading by example, our staff model strong principles and standards, demonstrating our philosophy and values in every operational aspect across the school.
Growth ‘Coaching done well may be the most effective intervention designed for human performance,’ (Gawande, 2011).
Trust begins and is built within leadership, and is prominent in the relationships between all staff members at Parkville College. Our leaders create a culture of nurturing positive relationships, ultimately enabling us to support the full development of our teachers, and therefore students. By providing avenues for all staff to continually develop and grow, we at Parkville College are building adaptive leaders.
Rotating higher duties
Identifying a willingness to lead and take on further responsibility is something Parkville College looks for in its staff. We provide all staff with opportunities to take on additional responsibility and develop professionally as leaders. Rotating positions of leadership provides opportunity for excellence, and allows us to achieve a high standard of teaching and learning in all facets of the school.
At Parkville College we share knowledge, research and collective leadership. The leadership of Parkville College does not fall on one or two individuals; it takes everyone across seven sites/campuses collectively, to deliver our values and principles. Together, we work towards our vision and common goals, and have trust in one another to do so.
Every teacher at Parkville College is coached on their instructional practice. Leadership supervision is coordinated approach that involves all levels of staff. Our Classroom Teachers are supported by Lead Teachers, and Lead Teachers are supported by their Campus Principals. Structures differ to meet the unique needs of each of our sites/campuses, but the overall purpose is consistent throughout Parkville College.
Coaching and staff development is strongly valued at Parkville College as it supports and enables our staff to improve student outcomes, and allows our students to achieve their highest potential. Conference meetings and classroom observations take place regularly, which focus on supporting our teachers to:
– Look after their wellbeing and allow them to feel comfortable in our setting
– Develop strong positive relationships with students
– Improve their overall instructional practice and ability to adapt to change
Internal professional development
In addition to coaching sessions, Parkville College provides staff with internal professional development, based on individual needs. Covering a broad range of areas, topics are created based on data from the 2014 School Staff Survey and classroom observations. Topics range from; trauma-informed practice, engaging disengaged students and developing individualised student-learning plans. Our expert Capacity Team, facilitate the professional development sessions, on a fortnightly basis.
Human Resources conferencing
Our staff are given the opportunity to take part in bi-annual Human Resources conferences that are aligned with their individual performance development plans. During these conferences, our Business Services and Human Resources team ensures that all Parkville College staff understand relevant policies and procedures, but also are able to meet their individual goals.
External professional development opportunities are provided, reflecting individual requirements and interests; for example:
– Masters of Education
– Certificate IV in Training and Assessment
– Calmer Classrooms
– ASIST: A suicide intervention model
– Leading Numeracy at the Bastow Institute