Two events for your diary

Two very important dates for your diary!
Avis
 
16th June  3.00 – 4.00 “A Conversation with Avis Glaze” at Glasgow University. This will be part of the Character Scotland Conference www.character.scot/conference and spaces are very limited.
Book you place here 

 
 
9th September SELMAS/Postcards from Scotland Brains Trust
“The Challenges of Equity: What is the role of educational leaders in contributing to strategic, political and cultural change?”. Speakers will include Sue Palmer, author of Toxic Childhood, Derek Brown, Head of Education at Fife Council and Danny Murphy, author of Schooling Scotland. 
The event will take place in the Malala Building , James Gillespies High School
57 Lauderdale Street, Edinburgh, Midlothian EH9 1DD

There will be no charge for this event. Places should be booked by emailing Bob.Cook@ed.ac.uk

SELMAS committee minutes 27th January 2015

MEETING OF THE COMMITTEE OF THE SCOTTISH EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP, MANAGEMENT AND ADMINISTRATION SOCIETY

Thursday 27 January 2015, in Strathclyde University

 

Present: M Alcorn (in the chair), S Beattie, R Cook, G Hamilton, G Hunt,  J McKerrecher, D Murphy, C Oates, J Robertson, G Walsh, A Wood.

  1. Apologies: V Donaldson, A-M Higgins, J Horsburgh, H Kinnear, D McCallum, P Sharp, G Thomson, D Torrance, T Wallace, K Westacott , I White
  2. Minutes and matters arising: the minutes of the previous meeting were agreed as an accurate record.
    1. SELMAS Forum: the usual format, including flowers, will operate. Margery McMahon will facilitate the evening.  Speakers: Brian Boyd, Juliette Murray (Surgeon), Jim McColl (Clyde Blowers/ Newlands College).  Discussion centred in part on costs and it was agreed to repeat the discount for new SELMAS attenders, £30 per ticket, with discount tickets for new attenders of £50 per pair.  AW to discuss with St George’s the possibility of a wine at the end of the session.  The publicity should mention, in the context of drivers, the availability of drink.  AW will send out publicity over the coming weeks.
    2. SELMAS Banner: the banners have been purchased and are on show. Thanks were expressed to colleagues who helped purchase and transport these.
    3. Conference Focus Group: a meeting of the focus group (agreed at our last committee meeting) will take place on Wednesday 4 February in Waverley Court to consider how best to plan for next year’s conference.
  3. Guest, Gary Walsh, Character Scotland: Gary thanked SELMAS for the invitation and welcomed the opportunity to work collaboratively.  Character Scotland is a charity operating since 2009.  Its schools based programme, a legacy of the 2014 Commonwealth Games, is Inspire, Aspire.  It has reached some 55 countries across the Commonwealth and seeks to encourage an international dialogue among school students and young people generally around values and attitudes.  The second strand looks at character education more generally and seeks to create a space for discussion and debate around such issues.  The charity is project funded until August 2015.  The project is culminating in a 2-day conference on the 15-16 June in the University of Glasgow with Avis Glaze as one of the key-note speakers.  Unfortunately, Judith McClure, one of the speakers for tonight’s event has had to withdraw.
  4. SCEL, possible joint event: Gillian Hamilton noted that she had now been in post at SCEL for five months and a full board is now in place.  Senior staff have been recruited form a range of sectors and the service of consultants is also being pursued.  SCEL is now at the stage where it must move from strategy development to practical work.  SCEL will now focus on three or four priorities, including its headteacher programme, and seek to build its potential over the next period.  In building SCEL’s profile, the organisation is keen to develop cooperative working relationships with a range of relevant organisations, including the strong possibility of a joint SCEL-SELMAS event.  The possibility of a joint event focussing on a question such as ‘What is, and how can we best develop, leadership among teachers?’ was discussed.  There was discussion about filming/recording such an event (and other such events) for the website.  It was agreed that such a joint event would be desirable and there was discussion about administrative approaches to facilitating such an event.  Jude McKerrecher intimated a joint Scottish-Chinese Headteacher event on 29 April organised by KISS.
  5. Centre for Confidence and Well-being, possible joint event (MA): MA mentioned the interest which had been generated by Danny Murphy’s new book. DM spoke about the conclusions of his book around the inequitable nature of the recognition and accreditation of achievement by young people in schools and the possibility of some unified form of ‘Scottish Graduation Certificate’, one not simply about academic attainment but about a wider profiling purpose.  GH raised the question of whether such an event should be incorporated into the 2015 conference or as an event to precede the conference.  The possibility of such an event in September 2015 was discussed further and it was agreed that MA would meet again with DM and CC to discuss this further.
  6. Reviewing and updating SELMAS Aims paper (GH): GH offered a range of ideas to update and sharpen the SELMAS Aims paper.  It was agreed this would be discussed further at the next meeting.
  7. Review of Committee functioning (AW): AW warmly endorsed GH’s paper and suggested that the definition of the functioning of the committee could be enhanced in the ‘What Can You Offer SELMAS?’ section of GH’s paper, including attendance at meetings and active work. MA also stressed the need for broader representation on the committee.  Agreed to circulate draft and that this also would be discussed further at the next meeting.
  8. AGM (AW): Agreed the June meeting would be an
  9. Trasurer’s Report (GH): G Hunt presented her treasurer’s report (attached). Last Scottish government payment March 2014; agreed to pursue further now and possibly also to approach the Gordon Cook Foundation.  Agreed that our general approach should be that events should pay for themselves.
  10. AOCB: there was no further competent business.
  11. Next Meeting: It was agreed that the next meeting would be at 00 pm on Thursday 26 March 2015, in Waverley Court.

SELMAS annual conference 2014: social justice – an impossible ideal?

A participant’s perspective…….Danny Murphy shares his thoughts.

The SELMAS Conference this year lived up to its usual high standard, addressing the issue of how schools and school leaders should respond to the issue which is at the centre of Scotlands future: social justice.

There were three excellent speakers. Lesley Riddoch led us off with a mixture of statistics, information and passion – she drew on her work with colleagues in Scandinavia to develop a vision of where we should be going but she also showed a nuanced understanding of the complex interplay of culture, expectations and school systems – change of this kind is a long term project, not a quick fix, but we need to make a start. Alan Williamson, Headteacher at Lasswade High, reminded us that Scottish schools are already doing quite a lot. The new policy environment of Curriculum for Excellence, GIRFEC and the management information tool ‘Insight’ creates a space in which secondary schools are more empowered than before to to bring all children into a meaningful educational experience leading to a positive destination. Sheila Laing, drawing on her work in West Pilton and Prestonpans, revisited Maslow – until children’s basic needs are met, we cannot expect to develop the four capacities of the new curriculum. Key values are ‘respect, nurture, learn.’ It is important for school leaders to be aware who has power and who is powerless in a school community and to share power across the school community. Although as school leaders we cannot do much at a the ‘macro’ level of Scottish policy, we can make a difference by what we do at the ‘meso’ level of the school and what we do makes a difference at the ‘micro’ level of the individual – that’s where we’ve got to start. In among Sheila’s many stories, we’ll all remember Billy – this year he is getting a poppy.

In between the presentations, we discussed the issues raised in smaller groups, sharing perspectives and experiences. One of the great advantages of the SELMAS event is that it brings people from all sectors and all parts of Scotland and there is always some useful discussion and sharing in those informal moments, over coffee and lunch. Each group had to prepare not two stars and a wish, but three wishes for a socially just Scotland and three wishes for socially just schools. These are being collated by the Selmas committee. We won’t have come up with all the answers, but those present will all go back to their various school communities with plenty of good ideas and a renewed sense that we are all part of a common project to make Scotland a better fairer place.

Danny Murphy was keen to share his thoughts about our annual conference on social justice. Danny’s new book ‘Schooling Scotland’, reviewed as a ‘must read for every adult in Scotland’, has just been published by Argyll Press at £7.99. Find out more on Danny’s own blog

#brainstrust2 tomorrow – will our current leadership strategies deliver?

BT2 panel

The waiting is nearly over for our next “brainstrust” quick and dirty pop-up event in Glasgow College. In keeping with the SELMAS philosophy of providing a platform for mature and open conversations about education and leadership, the brainstrust events focus on a theme, document, or idea which is current or emerging and affords a safe environment for the conversations about it to take place.

Follow the event on twitter – #brainstrust2

Because SELMAS is an independent organisation run by volunteers we can respond quickly to events, as long as we have the capacity to do so. This second brainstrust event has been made possible by the generosity of our friends in Glasgow College, who have kindly opened up their premises to us. Please take the time to check out a forthcoming event they are organising of their own – the One City event. They’re still looking for some facilitators for the CPD sessions running as part of this event so get in touch with Martin Taylor, Organisational Development Manager if you’d like to be involved.

#Brainstrust2…… Improving School Leadership: Can our current strategies deliver?

Improving School Leadership: Can our current strategies deliver? June 3rd 5.00 – 6.30pm.

City of Glasgow College, City Campus North Hanover Street, 60 North Hanover Street, Glasgow
Brainst trust2

Plans for the Scottish College for Educational Leadership are now advancing and a new CEO will be appointed soon. Join us for an open discussion on all aspects of educational leadership and on whether SCEL and other current leadership development strategies will deliver their stated objectives.

Margaret Alcorn (Convenor of SELMAS) will host the event and chair the discussion. Our panelist are: Margery McMahon, Lead National Co-ordinator for SCEL; Walter Humes, academic and journalist, currently Visiting Professor of Education at the University of Stirling and a regular contributor to the online journal Scottish Review; Danny Murphy, Senior Teaching Fellow at the University of Edinburgh; Rodger Hill, Education Officer, Dumfries & Galloway, with responsibility for leadership development and secondary staffing issues and Sue Beattie, , who is currently Head Teacher at Belmont Academy,
Sue has a passionate interest in building leadership capacity and ensuring high quality CPD for staff. She has been actively involved in projects with Tapestry, SELMAS and SCSSA with a focus on all aspects of leadership.

This will be a free event but, to ensure that we can match numbers, accomodation and catering, please let Alex Wood know if you intend attending by emailing him the completed booking form below. SELMAS looks forward to a great discussion and welcoming our many west of Scotland members to our first recent event in Glasgow.
booking-pro-forma BT2

We are grateful to Glasgow College for hosting this event. SELMAS gratefully acknowledges a grant from the Scottish Government in support of leadership development work in Scottish education.