Monday, 5 July 2010

"“Leadership is the process of engaging people in creating a legacy of excellence"... and making a difference."
Tom Peters

The last week has been simply extra-ordinarily busy…

It started on Monday with our amazing primary anti-bullying ambassadors who were having a day together at the Ghandi Building at Leeds Met, after which in the evening I attended the Diploma graduation ceremony at the Civic Hall where we celebrated our first cohort of successful young people who had completed these important new qualifications. On Tuesday I attended the brilliant launch of Robinson House: Carr Manor High School’s fourth house with Jason Robinson; before moving on to the fantastic ‘Be Healthy! Be Creative!’ celebration event at the Ghandi Hall at Leeds Met, finally ending the day at Woodkirk High School for their wonderful summer concert. On Wednesday I visited Ninelands Primary School in Garforth to see their new headteacher, and at the end of the day I attended another Gypsy Roma Traveller achievement celebration at the Civic Hall. On Thursday I managed to fit in another staff induction event at the Derek Fatchett Centre. And then on Friday I attended a special assembly at Hunslet Moor Primary School, a ‘Party on the Park’ at Cross Flatts Park Primary School and the first ever Yorkshire Evening Post ‘Best in School’ Awards 2010; a simply incredible day!

Life is never ever dull in Leeds, and the last week has demonstrated once again the outstanding practice, the incredible young people, and the inspirational colleagues that exist wherever you are prepared to look in this amazing city. To continue to achieve real change and to build real excellence consistently across every school in Leeds, we need to understand and start to shape the world in which we now operate. Change is happening wherever we look at a frightening pace, and all of the organisations we currently know and understand are being completely reinvented as I write. We need to work within the opportunities this presents to begin to build a new schools and learning system for this new world. A learning system to: equip our little learners with the skills they need to be successful bigger learners; to be successful in a world that is increasingly automated; and where the routine, the repetitive and the ordinary will increasingly be done by machine. A learning system where: every little learner is a reader, write and counter by seven or eight, a powerful little learner by the time they leave primary school; and on a pathway to success by the time they leave secondary school. We need to continue to build brilliant learning places with the team around the school supporting the team around the child and the family at the heart of our communities, with strong local engagement and powerful and committed governance. We need to continue to powerfully connect the best of what we all do and use local networks to develop and nurture excellence, and share good practice and great ideas. We need to nurture talent, creativity and imagination wherever we can find it, and we need to share and network the things that work and stop doing those that don’t!

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