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cultural signposts

September 8, 2013

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Athletics carnival time at our K-12 College yielded insights and bearings in relation to school culture.

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Wet weather and waterlogging earlier this week prompted scotching of Plan A at the more capacious nearby park; yesterday saw Plan B sweep into operation on the oval.

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Here’s the Opening Ceremony soundscape:

Dramatic presence of sun silhouettes around 8.30 am during arrival of the buses:

P1050567Then a jump to the presentations at day’s close:

P1050582Friendly, no? Parents, pleasantries & picnics.

Despite the pretense of warring with tribal faction colours, facepainting and costumery, values proving exultant included camaraderie, cheer and community.

Serendipitous:

  • Meeting siblings, extended family members
  • Shared tales/ revelations
  • Goodwill
  • Role modelling
  • Support for team spirit
  • Collaborative staff practices

Here we go culture weaving; according to Fullan and Hargreaves

Effective collaboration is not always easy. It brings with it a measure of difficulty and even discomfort on occasion. Warm, cosy relationships and an atmosphere of trust and openness are almost certainly necessary to supply a basis of security on which these more challenging processes of inquiry can be developed. But to bite the bullet of fundamental, deep and lasting change, improvement efforts should move beyond cooperative decision-making and planning, sharing experience and resources and supportive interpersonal relationships into joint work, mutual observation, and focused reflective inquiry. Effective collaborations operate in the world of ideas, examining existing practices critically, seeking better alternatives and working hard together at bringing about improvements an assessing their worth (Fullan & Hargreaves, 1991, p. 57).

Markers to guide the journey that lies ahead.

2013-09-05 10.57.10

Selected reference

Fullan, M. & Hargreaves, A. (1991). What’s worth fighting for in your school? Columbia University, NY: Teachers College Press.

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