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Bridging the Gap ICTPD Cluster Reflection April 2012

Title: Bridging the Gap ICTPD Cluster Reflection April 2012
Year level: Three
Cluster type: Traditional

The Context: Principal’s professional leadership and mentoring of e-learning leaders to achieve outcomes for Cluster Goal 2

National Goal 2: principals to lead the integration of e-learning in their schools (strategic and operational);

Bridging the Gap Goal 2a: principals act to strengthen leadership in the use of e-learning to enhance effective teaching and learning.

Success Criteria: Evidence will show that:

  • The e-learning lead team has regular planned opportunities to learn from the leadership strengths (knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours) within the principals’ group.
  • The principals direct and facilitate the e-learning leaders’ workshops.
  • The e-learning leaders have opportunities to practice and reflect on leadership skills.

Research model used:

Guskey's Professional Development Assessment Model was used to determine the effects and effectiveness of BTG e-learning leadership meetings.  Refer: Thomas R Guskey Evaluating Professional Development 2000 Corwin Press

The Focus: Strengthening leadership in e-learning. BTG Cluster Goal #2a

What was important for us?

Strengthening e-learning leadership within the cluster schools by changing the structures, knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours required to lead teaching and learning in the context of e-learning.

Using the experience and ability of cluster principals to support and mentor the cluster school’s e-learning leaders.

What did we do?

Cluster principals met with e-learning leaders once a term. Each principal took a turn in leading and hosting the session so that e-learning leaders could learn from the different styles of leadership and change management experience of individual principals.

An important outcome of leadership is managing change.  Leadership requires honest assessment and commitment – leaders have to learn how to “speak and act with intention”.   

The principals used a format for PLG designed for in-school facilitators – adapted from the First Time Principal’s Programme to help e-learning leaders learn to speak and act with intention.

Format for the Session

Leading e-learning Question: What are the highs, lows and hurdles you have experienced related to e-learning leadership in an ICTPD cluster (and or change management)?

1.  Establish group rules for confidentiality and challenge. This ensures group members feel able to talk professionally about a leadership experience without fear of misrepresentation, or quotation out of context.  It clarifies the importance of challenge when pursuing academic norms rather than social norms for the group outcome.

2. Identify “What’s on top”. This quick sharing time around the group updates members and establishes the reason for meeting together.

 3. Share Issues.  Each member of the group has an equal amount of time to share their current e-learning or change management issue – a high, low or hurdle.

A group member introduces their issue. During this time, other group members ask facilitative questions to ensure everyone is aware of the nature of the issue.  Once the nature of the issue is established, group members offer suggestions for improvement or “next steps’.  The group member introducing the issue accepts all suggestions graciously and without reaction.

E.g. “Thank you for your suggestions. I appreciate your honesty. I would like to talk further with you about the topic.”

This process repeats until all members have spoken about an issue.

4. Reflection.  Group members reflect for 5 minutes on the issue they brought to the meeting, the observations and suggestions offered by the group, and on how (or if) the issue has changed as a result.

5. Report back. Group members share their current thinking about the issue they brought to the meeting.

The Rationale:
Why was this important?

In year two of the individual cluster schools took responsibility for meeting their own e-learning needs. Structures were changed and cluster funding for an e-learning facilitator who worked across all schools (in year one of the contract) was re-allocated to enable e-learning leaders to be established within each school.

These cluster e-learning leaders were charged with helping teachers use SOLO Taxonomy and emerging technologies as models and tools for deep learning and evidence based pedagogical change. They needed support from cluster principals who used their extensive experience and expertise in leading learning and change management to help e-learning leaders become effective leaders of learning in cluster schools. 

What happened as a result?

Refer reports from BTG Principals and e-leading leaders on Leadership Meetings.

Impact on students/teachers/whanau
Insert any evidence of impact of enhanced e-learning leadership or change management on students, teachers or whanau

Principals' reflection on impact on teachers, students and whanau

Lead Teachers' reflection on impact on teachers, students and whanau

Note: Al-Madinah School lead teacher Qamar Sultana is aligning these reflections against the Registered Teacher Criteria. refer BTG wiki for evidence.

RTC: Professional relationships and professional values: demonstrate commitment to ongoing professional learning and development of professional practice [#4]
RTC: Professional relationships and professional values: show leadership that contributes to effective teaching and learning [#5]
RTC: Professional knowledge in practice: conceptualise plan and implement an appropriate learning programme [#6]
RTC: Professional knowledge in practice: promote a collaborative inclusive and supportive learning environment [#7]
RTC: Professional knowledge in practice: demonstrate in practice their knowledge and understanding of how akonga learn [#8]
RTC: Professional knowledge in practice: analyse and appropriately use the assessment information which has been gathered formally and informally [#11]

What did we learn?

Leading e-learning for innovative and sustainable outcomes requires collaborative approaches – adopting approaches that think and act with teachers to co-create new understandings and behaviours around e-learning (“the logic of with” (Leadbetter 2009)) over approaches that adopt a deficit approach and think for teachers.

What are our next steps?

PL Focus for 2012 is on enhancing the ability of e-learning leaders to speak and act with intention. This includes building openness and trust in the principal e-learning leader’s discussion of issues around e-learning leadership and change management.

Relevant links
Links to your actual reflection -
Links to school e-learning leadership practice