New Roles, New Challenges, Same Solution(s)

The following post originally appeared in CBE 182

Where to start? This week saw me step into a new role in a new school. I immediately felt a kinship with our new Grade 7’s as they came in wide-eyed and excited with this new experience, but also a little anxious that there is so much that they don’t know, and that we don’t realize we don’t know it until someone tells us we don’t know. What I have learned this week though, is that whether you are a new student, new teacher or new administrator, your success is largely dependent on the support of your peers, mentors and external partners.

As many of us across the system step into new roles and take on new responsibilities, it is crucial that we lean on our existing networks while attempting to tap into new ones. Students and staff need to feel safe, they need to feel cared for and they need to know that a mistake is not the end, but an opportunity for further learning. In our school I see students being welcomed into a safe and caring environment by our amazing staff who look for ways to engage students through clubs, athletics, the fine arts and a host of other co-curricular and extracurricular activities. I see students being connected with outside agencies and partners, ensuring that a holistic approach is being applied to support the whole student and I see it through the conversations we have around students and how we can best support their learning.

For myself, I have learned that I am only going to be successful through, not only the support of my Principal, but also the Area Based teams and Service Units. Already I have leaned on HR, Finance, IT and Learning to help support my work. I also rely heavily on my own network of colleagues. I feel good about this year, I feel challenged and I feel supported. If our students can say the same thing every day when they leave to go home, we can feel confident that we are making a profound difference in their learning.