Ready or Not!

George Couros’ blog post titled A New Staff Experience has really made an impact on me.  It has had me reflecting about leading change and the impact on school initiatives by varying abilities and attitudes of different staff members.

In George’s article, he speaks about how he introduced and prioritised blogging with his staff so that it could be filtered through to the students.  I interpreted George’s message to be that if we want to make a initiative a priority and sustainable, we need to invest time and resources.

George goes on to speak about differentiated learning for staff.  He recognises that everyone is at a different stage in their professional learning journey.  This may seem obvious.  I mean we do this in our classrooms.  We walk with students along their own learning journey, providing explicit instruction at their point of need.  I guess, it would make sense to do this with adults too.  But do we?  And can we?

I mean, is it different for a community of staff?  Are we only as strong as our weakest link?  Can you move forward in a way so that no-one is left behind?

All day, I’ve been stewing on these questions.  Should leaders introduce change slowly so that all are on board?  Or does it depend on the change?  If we are changing visions and philosophies – then I would strongly answer “YES”.  I believe everybody needs to have a common understanding and vision.  In this context, we all need to be on board or else the vision is blurred and not sustainable.

But what about changing, or should I say developing skills? Especially with technology.  There is a HUGE variation in staff’s knowledge and confidence with technology.  How do we move ahead with technology without leaving anyone behind?  And how slow can we go?  In terms of technology, we’re already playing catch up with this generation of children!

As you may have noticed, I don’t have a lot of answers… Just a whole lot of questions!  I am not suggesting that there is a right or a wrong way to go about this.  Therefore, I am interested to hear how other leaders and/or schools have gone about initiating and leading change, especially in regards to ICT.  How have leaders catered for the varying abilities of staff members?


J Palermo

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