It is amazing how productive one can be at 3 am when stuck in a cab with your Principal. Particularly when you know that in 5 hours you will be guzzling your first of many cappuccinos and sitting in front of a lecturer discussing educational leadership styles, frameworks, and theories.
Our early morning conversation was filled with ideas, creativity, and future planning as we were still feeling inspired and encouraged by a day spent at the Leadership Development Program (LDP) Symposium held in North Adelaide in April. We both found the day thought-provoking, challenging, daunting, and enjoyable. The more than twenty participants spent the first day with their mentors who were a mix of Principals, Heads of School, and other leaders who have chosen to mentor a future leader.
One of the special things about being a part of the Lutheran Education system is knowing that you are not alone as an educator but are an important component of a system that holds students, our faith, and each other as integral to providing learning and love to school communities throughout our country. Each of the three days of the symposium left us both feeling very much a part of such a vibrant and caring system of education. However we quickly realised that our lecturer, Professor Lauren Stephenson, was going to be challenging our ideas of educational leadership, and our understanding of scholarly literature in this field would increase exponentially!
The next two days was spent further delving into Educational Leadership theory, frameworks, and styles. The sessions were regularly diverted into group discussions with plenty of opportunity for us all to share our perspectives and experience. This gave us all many chances to build genuine bonds of friendship and support between the participants.
Overall the three days were stimulating, daunting, rigorous, thought-provoking, and inspiring. Both of us are looking forward to completing our first of two 2500 word essays and taking the opportunity to connect once again with our mentors. More importantly we are keen to return to our school and demonstrate a greater understanding of leadership through our interactions with staff, students, and the college community.
Oh, and 3 am in the morning is way too late to be looking for the closest Macca’s.
By Yu Cameron and Jon Grear
(Yu and Jon are both teachers and curriculum leaders at Encounter Lutheran College in Victor Harbor SA, and are participants in the LDP)