The Bastow Institute of Educational Leadership offers innovative, evidence-based and highly relevant leadership professional development and training courses that respond to the changing needs of primary and secondary school teachers, principals and early childhood professionals. Established in 2009, the Bastow Institute of Educational Leadership is a branch within the Early Childhood and School Education Group at the Victorian Department of Education and Training (DET).
Distinguished Professor Viviane Robinson has had a long-standing relationship with Bastow and currently serves on their Board. In 2013 the University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership partnered with Bastow to achieve a wide level of delivery of Open-to-learning™ Leadership knowledge and expertise across Victorian principals and school leaders through a ‘train the trainer’ model. Experienced principals were selected to undertake nine days of training in which they first learned the Open-to-learning ™ Leadership model and were then trained to facilitate it. The training is linked to nine different levels of Open-to-learning ™ Leadership. Formative and summative assessments are included in all modules. All summative assessments must be passed to become an accredited facilitator of Open-to-learning ™ Leadership. Once accredited, participants are able to lead 1 or 2 day Open-to-learning ™ modules for other school leaders in areas agreed with the partner organisation.
The work in Open-to-learning™ Leadership is now being included in the principal preparation programme run by the Bastow Institute. The centre is currently working with Bastow to include an assessment focus in their programme for aspiring principals. This has included the design of specific tools to help give consistent and high quality feedback and guidance to aspiring principals.
Broken Bay Diocese
The University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership has worked in the Broken Bay Diocese since 2011. This partnership started with numerous large conferences in the first two years ‘frontloading’ the student-centred leadership model. Keynote addresses were provided by Distinguished Professor Viviane Robinson, Professor Helen Timperley, and Professor Graeme Aitken as well as other Centre for Educational Leadership staff. Workshops were also provided for clusters of schools to dig into these concepts in a more personalised environment. In 2014 and 2015 the focus has shifted even more to whole school improvement with Dr Linda Bendikson supporting secondary schools by providing school improvement planning clinics for all schools as they seek to refine their planning for the year ahead.
Wagga Wagga Diocese
In 2014 and 2015, Professor Helen Timperley and Dr Linda Bendikson led a project to teach a group of schools the process of school improvement that is encapsulated in the ‘inquiry, learning and action cycle’. Schools each had to identify a key problem that was impeding improvement and implement strategies to improve student outcomes. They met as a cluster of schools approximately once per term for two days in 2014 and 2015 as they developed their understanding of the process. In 2015, the diocese has chosen to introduce this cycle to all their schools. Helen and Linda presented at conferences to frontload the big ideas and processes, whilst leaving the diocesan staff to do the more in-depth individual support to schools.