I recently had the great privilege to participate in the SSAT‘s Leadership Legacy Project, a program designed to grow future leaders for UK schools. What was most encouraging about this event — echoed in the week that I spent with SSAT member teachers and staff at events around England — was the emphasis on developing thoughtful leaders by first developing thoughtful teachers. Too often, we can see school leadership and teaching as disconnected or even oppositional. But for powerful learning environments to be created, every member of a school — from the cleaners to the highest level of leadership — has to be engaged in helping learners. In effect, everyone has to be on the teaching team.
This was the primary message of the amazing Baroness Sue Campbell, chair of the Youth Sport Trust and key figure on the UK’s 2012 Olympic Committee. Sue reminded us that teamwork and mutual support are a far more important foundation for success than focusing on skills and performance. Her generosity and encouragement were a great fit for SSAT’s mission and message.
The best thing about SSAT is its role as connector, bringing people together in a powerful, country-wide network to think, collaborate, imagine, and work. I’m glad to have become part of that network, and I’m looking forward to staying connected!