Leading from the Middle Twlight

October 14, 2009 § Leave a comment

Arrived at the Marriot Meon Valley Hotel at 4:30 fully loaded on Nurofen to help suppress the flu. I was there in body if not in spirit. The warm autumn evening and rural setting immediately raised my expectations.

Thoughtful, light snacks as well as refreshment were laid out and although they look very appealing, I just didnt have an appetite . My overall impression of the evening was of a professional, corporate style training rather than the typical CPD experienced within schools. With reference to previous posts, this was perhaps one of the first ‘differentiated’ CPD sessions I have accessed since arriving at Hamble College 18 months ago.

Working in small groups, our group brought together Year Leaders and HODs from a range of subjects and therefore we all brought with us different educational experiences. Very quickly, the benefits of this clustered approach surface with productive conversation and mutual understanding of what it was like to be a middle leader.

Perhaps a summary of the group’s review of what we expect to get from ‘Leading from the Middle’ would be useful to summary here.

Gains (Personally) School Benefits
increased confidence – dealing with people, learning skills to lead improved results in QA
establish in role – tidying up ‘rough edges’ home grown leaders – succession planning
aware of competencies  
finding out what type of leaders we are   
Negatives Drawbacks
time / workload sharing +ives / -ives
initiating new ideas bounce ideas off of each other
time pressures on colleagues, having to implement these changes other professionals to off load to
managing and dealing with feedback  

If the ‘Leading from the Middle’ experience, enables me to address and balance these points above, it is likely to be a very positive experience for everyone.

Finally, the evening ended with a brief inspection of the online community and forums (it was good to see Gillian McCadden as one of the online facilitator) and I am interested to see if there is now greater readiness from teachers to engage with the online experience. Overall, I am looking forward to the course and working with colleagues from other schools.

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