In 2017, the College implemented a new initiative with a focus to further enhance the leadership capacity of teaching staff, in positions of added responsibility. We embarked on this journey together with The National Excellence in School Leadership Initiative (NESLI), with 21 staff undertaking the highly regarded Australian Schools Leadership Colloquium.
The success of the Colloquium was exceptional. This was the impetus for the College to create a programme that will formally assist staff identify and develop leadership skills relevant to their career stage and current roles and responsibilities.
In partnership with NESLI, we worked together to create The Somerset College Leadership Academy (SLA). This is an innovative pathway that has enabled us to bring together a range of leadership programmes from NESLI’s internationally respected curriculum. The SLA provides a strategic and sustainable platform that allows us to provide an industry-leading approach to developing the leadership capability of all staff throughout our organisation.
With NESLI’s oversight of the Leadership Academy model, programmes were mapped into a logical pathway culminating in credit towards Masters-level qualifications. This enabled us to plan appropriate and timely developmental interventions to the specific needs of our staff members throughout their professional journey at Somerset College. Our suite of programmes include the Enhancing Professional Practice, Aspiring to Middle Leadership, Australian Schools Leadership Colloquium, Advanced Leadership for Women, and Executive Leadership.
This year we are excited to have a further 22 staff involved in this initiative. We are delighted with their motivation and excitement for the opportunity. In Week Three our Aspiring to Middle Leadership participants started their course with a two day introduction with facilitator, Paul Larkin. This feedback from a staff member summarizes those expressed by the group:
"I have a tendency to be sceptical when it comes to leadership courses, as I’ve seen some presentations which were entertaining, but often had no tangible, take away message to implement in my role in schools. The NESLI course far surpassed my expectations. The information delivered was relevant and meaningful and I could immediately see how implementing some of the strategies would improve my interactions and leadership of others. The activities were engaging and I found the self-reflection confronting in a way that challenged me to identify areas I need to develop and take pride in aspects that are strengths."
We feel confident and proud of this significant undertaking, as outlined in our current Strategic Plan. We see this as more than an investment in individuals; it is an investment in our organisation and this can only have a positive outcome for our most important stakeholders, our students.
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