This time last year I was anxiously awaiting the first week of term three (read my post from day one here). Why? I was starting my new job at Hobsonville Point Secondary School, a brand new high school in Auckland, New Zealand. I felt uncertain about what was ahead, I worried about working with new colleagues, learning new (as in brand new) systems and procedures and trying to figure out if I was really good enough to be one of the chosen few Leaders of Learning (ever are eight of us).
What a ride it has been! Never in my life I had experienced such a bumpy ride of professional learning which made me evaluate my personal and professional beliefs (in a good way). I cannot even begin to categorise what I have learnt , but the leadership of Maurie, Claire, Di and Lea, as well as the continual leadership and support from my fellow teachers, has opened my eyes up to so much in education. Not to mention the critical friends who pop in – Mark, Julia, Marg and Pam to name a few. Oh, and the places we’ve been – design thinking workshops, conferences, ignite sessions, mind lab…. I often leave work, even now, with my head full of possibilities, questions and ponderings.
Before going on holiday at the end of term two, I happened to have my now very tatty notebook with me that I brought in on my first day. It is full of notes, diagrams, questions, post its, brochures, scribbles and thoughts. In some ways it captures where my head has been, where it is now and where it may be going.
I cannot say that it has been an easy ride. It has been bumpy, sometimes more like a roller coaster than a cruise down a long stretch of smooth, pristine road. But that is what I was looking for – a challenge, the chance to try some new things, to innovate education for the better. Have we nailed it? Not yet, but we are on the way.