Last year Bastow established a partnership with Distinguished Professor Viviane Robinson, Academic Director of the Centre for Educational Leadership in Faculty of Education at the University of Auckland, to offer a ‘train the trainer’ model of Open-to-Learning (OTL™) Conversations.
OTL™ Conversations teaches participants how to build trust in teams and with individuals, while tackling the tough issues associated with the work involved in school and teacher performance and improvement. The objective of the course is to improve the confidence and skills of principals to engage in productive and respectful conversations about issues affecting the quality of teaching and learning.
Tony Fowler, Principal at Warracknabeal Secondary College and Brendan Bush, Principal of Horsham West and Haven Primary School, completed the ‘train the trainer’ model of OTL™ Conversations in 2013 along with ten other principals. They facilitated the first highly successful OTL™ Conversations workshop for school leaders and principals in Horsham on Tuesday 18 February 2014.
For Tony Fowler, key learnings from OTL™ Conversations were based around the concept of relational trust.
“The course demonstrated the positive impact of high relational trust on student outcomes,” explains Tony. “Without this trust we are doomed in our roles as principals … it is a means of progressing a task while maintaining and enhancing relationships.”
Tony strongly believes that OTL™ Conversations has played an important role in the improvements in teaching and learning that have occurred at his school.
“I am better equipped to effectively manage difficult situations and at the same time protect relationships from being damaged,” says Tony.
“High levels of relational trust provide a climate of respect, safety and caring … where true improvement can flourish … and provide the foundation for significant and sustainable change.”
A series of OTL™ Conversations workshops will be run across Victoria throughout the year.
For further information about how to apply and key dates go to the Open to Learning Leadership