Australian Primary Principals Association - Connected Leader: The APPA e-journal for Australian primary school leaders
 

President@APPA

October 2017

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you all enjoyed some well-earned rest and relaxation over the break. Congratulations to the Richmond and Melbourne Storm supporters. The rest of us will look forward to season 2018.

Last issue we announced the endorsement of the National Statement on Principal and Health and Wellbeing and the release of report Back to Balance: How Policy and Practice can make Primary Principals Highly Effective. I strongly encourage every principal to download a copy and make it available to staff, parents and your school board or council. We suggest a copy be emailed to your system, department or jurisdiction personnel. We are wanting a national and local conversation with the aim to bring about change and a better way to support principals.

It is time to take control and influence over the leader’s work. The report was very clear about the need for support and trust from employers. It also provides an excellent list of the supportive policies and practices that school leaders value and enable them to be effective leaders.

It identified elements of practice for improving the health and wellbeing of principals. The findings are significant and I recommend them to all, so we can have healthy, well and highly effective primary school principals leading our schools.

The resulting report will make a significant contribution to a rapidly developing dialogue between employers, systems, governments and the profession about how best to protect and improve the health and wellbeing of primary school leaders while simultaneously providing the policy and practice resources to make them highly effective. The recommendations in the report are targeted at primary principals, their professional associations and the profession of school leadership. Recommending action by these groups is deliberate. Employers, systems and governments will be interested in the data presented in this report and the stories behind them. APPA believes the data and stories are compelling; those in charge of Australian education, our schools and school systems will make changes in light of them. However, it is Australia’s primary school leaders who must take ownership of these research findings and use them to make their work healthy, fulfilling, effective and attractive to aspirants.

RECOMMENDATION ONE

The profession of school leadership must insist and demonstrate it deserves trust and support so that principals can lead teaching and learning for all Australian students and teachers.

The trust of line managers, employers and systems is highly valued by primary principals. Individually and collectively principals foster that trust and support. Principals must accept every opportunity to articulate their role, establish its collaborative nature and push back against those who argue primary schools are over resourced or not effective. We need to insist and articulate what is the leader’s role and work. This needs to be communicated and demonstrated in action.

RECOMMENDATION TWO

Australian primary principals associations must advocate for adequate support aimed at meaningful accountability and compliance reporting.

Many of the accountability and compliance activities undertaken by primary principals have little or no bearing on the teaching and learning in schools and classrooms. Documentation around risk assessment, facilities maintenance and outside agency use of grounds are just three examples. Professional associations should vigorously question why principals are tasked with this work. We need to support each other and have the courage to question why and how a new initiative or change will impact teaching and learning, and how the accountability is more than compliance.

RECOMMENDATION THREE

Australian primary principals associations must advocate for well- supported policies, procedures and practices that ensure primary school leaders can manage staff, students and parents effectively.

The devolution of autonomy to schools has been occurring for many years. Changes to, and support for, policy, procedures and practices have not kept pace with increasing autonomy. When effective and supported policies, procedures and practices are in place and used, primary principals’ health and wellbeing will improve. Any new initiative needs to have support and be resourced adequately. If undertaking an initiative or change then what is not going to be done? If we say YES to this, to what are we saying NO? We need to learn to say no with confidence.

RECOMMENDATION FOUR

Australian primary principals must utilise school personnel and resources to ensure the school operates highly effectively.

There is no ethical or moral dilemma about enhancing school leadership through deployment of personnel and resources. Primary principals, regardless of school context, must not resile from providing the necessary support for leadership. Their schools’ effectiveness depends upon it. It is ‘okay’ to allocate resources to the effective leadership and management of the school, including the support for the leadership team. School resources can be used to support the principal’s role and work commitments.

RECOMMENDATION FIVE

Australian primary principals must actively manage their workload.

The workload of most primary principals is unsustainable. Rather than more skilling, advice on how to work smarter or additional unskilled staff, if primary principals are to improve their deteriorating health and wellbeing and continue in the role which they still find satisfying, what is required is less work. Successful action on the recommendations above notwithstanding, they must at times say no to discretionary effort not directly related to leading teaching and learning.

We need to model effective leadership. That means implementing strategies and practices that enable the principal to be effective and the best leader for the school. Principals need to model the practice for aspiring leaders.

Representing principals in government, Catholic and independent primary schools across Australia, APPA is the ‘voice’ of primary school leaders at a national level. It is through our member associations – the national, state and territory primary principals associations – that we instigated this study and so take a lead role in addressing the issue of principal health and wellbeing. APPA would be happy to help facilitate a presentation of the report and recommendations.

We want this report – Back to Balance: How Policy and Practice can make Primary Principals Highly Effective – to make a difference. The full report is available on the APPA website.

APPA is calling for a change in direction; the warning signs are there. We can no longer put a band aid on the problem and hope or luck are not a solution. The movement by principals to improve the balance, and take back control and influence is growing. APPA will continue to advocate for and support this movement. We need to be the change.

REVIEW TO ACHIEVE EDUCATIONAL EXCELLENCE IN AUSTRALIAN SCHOOLS

APPA is currently developing a submission and will finalise at the next National Advisory Council meeting in Sydney at the end of the month. I encourage all principals to talk with their local principal association and complete an online submission. The more the panel hears from principals the better. Our key messages include:

  • APPA has just completed a major survey and report on Policy to Practice. The report Back to Balance identifies that the key to ensuring we have effective leadership is trust and support for our school leaders. Trusting principals and teachers to be empowered to lead their school’s teaching and learning will be the difference between successful reform and more of the same.
  • Schools need autonomy with curriculum priorities to enable context to be a key component of teaching and learning.
  • Education must become a long term, bi-partisan approach not interrupted by elections or politics. Our school communities need certainty in a changing world. APPA is very cautious of any drop-in solutions from other countries. APPA believes we can learn from other systems, but also, we believe many of our solutions can be found from within our country.
  • APPA believes a key priority for the panel is to ensure any educational reforms provide equity for all students, no matter their location, context or family circumstances.

APPA CONFERENCE 2018

The organising committee have released information for the 2018 APPA National Conference in Perth, 18-21 September. The special super early registration is only for this term, so book it now! Follow this link on the APPA website.

I wish everyone a great Term 4 and success with the end of year events.

Best wishes,

Dennis Yarrington
President, Australian Primary Principals Association
E: dennis@appa.asn.au
Mobile: 0466 655 468

 

Are you a Masters student looking for a research project to help principals?

Michael Hawton, psychologist and teacher, who runs the Tough Conversations workshops nationally (see registration form) is seeking an educator who is currently undertaking a higher degree to evaluate the impact of professional development in reducing principals’ stress levels. The research would need to be done ‘at arms’ length’ from the programme developers. There is good anecdotal evidence from the 200+ school leaders, who have already completed the program, that it is benefiting members of our association. But, it is important to build the evidence base. There may be some opportunity to liaise with Associate Professor, Phil Riley, who is willing to discuss any design issues. So, if you’re looking for a topic and you want to do some applied research, please contact Michael Hawton on 0422 214 430. Michael can describe the topic and its parameters.
 

Under the spotlight

October 2017

Florence Kearney

The principal of Somerville House, an independent girls’ school in Brisbane, has resigned after seven years in the role. Mrs Kearney will leave the school at the end of 2017.
 
 

Marius Marx

Weekly yoga, a massage chair in the staffroom and personal training sessions are available to all teachers at Pimpama State School, in Queensland. Building positivity is an important goal for this school’s principal.
 

Rod Morrison

The deputy headmaster of an independent boys’ school in Sydney was shocked when departing students, posing for an end-of-school photograph, unexpectedly unfurled a Nazi flag and gave the Nazi salute. Mr Morrison’s immediate response was exemplary, with the apologetic school later offering learning programs on the Holocaust, even to the departed students who had participated in the offensive photo.
 

John Macdonald

We applaud the principal of Shellharbour Public School, in NSW. John MacDonald recently cycled 4000km to raise funds for Camp Quality and support four of his students who have undergone, or are currently receiving, cancer treatment.
 

Ralph Wisner

Understandably frustrated by the extremely poor attendance of parents at key school functions, this US principal announced that the children of non-compliers would be given double detentions until a written note was provided. He has since retracted the directive.
 

Locally made ethical school wear

Through their own procurement policies local schools have the power to support an ethical Australian clothing industry and help prevent the exploitation of workers. There are local school wear manufacturers who are committed to making clothes locally the right way.

Ethical Clothing Australia is responsible for accrediting local clothing and footwear manufacturers to ensure that their workers are receiving their legal wages and entitlements, and working in decent conditions.

To find out more contact Ethical Clothing Australia to ask how we can assist your school to source ethically accredited school wear.

Phone: 03 94190222
Email: info@ethicalclothingaustralia.org.au
Website: www.ethicalclothingaustralia.org.au

Learning curve

October 2017

Managing parents who bully and badger

Australian parenting educator Michael Gross provides eight defensive strategies to adopt when managing angry parents who bully or badger.
 

Vocal executive presence

How well do you use the tonality of your own voice to build executive presence? The way you say your own name impacts on perceptions of your credibility, says Laura Sicola.
 

New appointment for certification board

Susan Pascoe has been appointed as independent chair of the Australian Principal Certification Advisory Board, which is managed by Principals Australia Institute. PAI initiated development of Australian principal certification in 2012, designing a national framework for certification of principals.
 

Time management makeover

When you deliberately focus on the things that really matter, you can make different choices in the 168 hours that make up each week. Laura Vanderkam talks about the time makeover of a woman who was trying to manage career, family and home responsibilities.
 

The motivating school principal

US principal Claudia Aguirre explains what she does to motivate the many impoverished students in her dual language middle school in New York.
 

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Legal eagles

October 2017

Compensation for over-suspension costs

Education Queensland recently accepted the state Ombudsman’s recommendation that it compensate a student and her mother for money spent on an evening dress and accessories. As a result of being suspended for more than the legally allowable time, the girl missed the school formal. Education Queensland has announced that principals in the region are to receive professional development about legislative requirements and departmental processes for student disciplinary decisions.
 

Anglican Church misses payment deadline

The Anglican Church recently failed to meet a payment deadline in relation to an agreed $1.5m settlement to a victim of sexual abuse at a Brisbane independent school in the 1980s.
 

Parent attacks on students

Growing numbers of students in many states are being physically attacked or threatened with violence by parents, step-parents and grandparents on school grounds. Principals in South Australia can issue ‘prohibition notices’, barring people from school grounds for up to three months, pending education department approval.
 

UberEats banned from school deliveries

On health and safety grounds, a school in Auckland recently banned UberEats and similar vendors from delivering food to students at school. Smart phone food ordering is now an international phenomenon.
 

Litigation risk of religious text

Knowing that it could be sued, and would certainly lose, the Charlotte County School Board, in Virginia, USA, will issue district-wide guidelines making it clear that memorial benches in schools cannot promote religion. Biblical text on a bench installed to memorialise a deceased student will soon be replaced with secular text.
 

PR1ME Mathematics—based on the world’s best practice used in Singapore PR1ME has been developed by Scholastic in collaboration with the Ministry of Education in Singapore.

How does it work? PR1ME: explicitly and systematically teaches the problem solving processes and strategies; uses consistent and carefully structured pedagogy; takes a carefully scaffolded, deep-dive into conceptual development; actively involves students in metacognition; and provides professional learning for teachers.

Challenge your thinking

October 2017

The future of single-sex schools

A recent ACER study has sparked fresh debate about the academic ‘value-added’ of single-sex schools, with research fellow Katherine Dix predicting that there may be ‘no single-sex independent schools in Australia by the year 2035.’
 

Cognitive and social benefit of stories

Researchers at the University of Southern California have mapped the activity inside the brain when a story is processed. The report has significant implications for the development of empathy.
 

Personality benefits of homework

Researchers at the University of Tübingen, in Germany, have found that students who do more homework than their peers show positive changes in conscientiousness.
 

Overcoming ‘imposter syndrome’

Psychologist Andrew Martin is researching the tendency for girls to suffer from ‘imposter syndrome’ and experience much higher anxiety than boys in relation to personal competence.
 

Cognitive advantages of video gaming

Neuropsychologists let video gamers compete against non-gamers in a learning competition. During the test, the video gamers performed significantly better and showed an increased neural activity in the brain areas that are relevant for learning.
 

For 40 years, Scholastic Australia has been partnering with schools across the country to give kids access to books they want to read through Clubs and Fairs. In 2012, Scholastic gave Australian schools over $11 million worth of Scholastic Rewards. To find out how you can spend Scholastic Rewards on resources and save your budget, visit

Balancing act

October 2017

Aerobic exercise and stress relief

Aerobic workouts appear to help reduce levels of the body's natural stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol, says a recent study in the ‘Journal of Physical Therapy Science’.
 

A simple way to break a bad habit

Sometimes one or several of our behaviours undermine our physical or emotional health. Despite knowing that at an intellectual level, we continue to repeat negative behaviours. In this presentation, psychiatrist Judson Brewer describes the use of mindfulness in eliminating unhelpful habits.
 

Protecting your health: managing stress

In this Harvard University presentation, a panel of expert discuss the impact of stress on health and provide some strategies for stress management.
 

Identifying high functioning depression

There are seven signs that you may be suffering from high functioning depression.
 

Choosing a psychologist

Amanda Collins provides a useful guide on what to consider when choosing a psychologist in Australia.
 

Camp Australia delivers after school care solutions, building on the educational experience of school communities. As the nation’s leading after school care provider Camp Australia has partnered with school communities for 25 years, adding value by delivering high quality care, well-trained staff, systems and support. Find out how Camp Australia will add value to your school community at

Something different

October 2017

Virtual reality for the classroom

Australian company Lithodomos VR uses virtual reality headsets to provide students with photorealistic and archeologically accurate ‘visits’ to historically famous structures.
 

The ‘Evidence for Learning’ toolkit

Keilor Views Primary School, in Melbourne, is using the Evidence for Learning toolkit, a global database of education research that schools can use to introduce new teaching programs into the classroom.
 

The joys of a mud kitchen

The nature playscape at St John’s School, in Geraldton, WA, features a mud kitchen. Research by the not-for-profit organisation Nature Play WA shows that 85 per cent of Australian children spend less than two hours a day playing outside
 

Drawbacks of multi-teacher spaces

The Post Primary Teachers Association resolved at their recent annual conference to ‘challenge the Ministry of Education on the need to research the effectiveness of flexible learning spaces in terms of their impact on student achievement, student wellbeing, teaching and learning and teacher satisfaction.’ Critics of multi-teacher flexible learning spaces, which are common in New Zealand primary schools, focus on the vulnerability of several groups of children.
 

Food substitution

Packed lunches are searched by staff wearing rubber gloves at Westgate Primary School, in the UK. Items with a high fat or sugar content are replaced with a healthy alternative.
 

KidsMatter Primary is a proven mental health and wellbeing framework for primary schools. It provides expert knowledge, tools and support to help schools grow healthy young minds and care for children’s mental health. KidsMatter is backed by the expertise of Principals Australia Institute, beyondblue and the Australian Psychological Society.

My word

October 2017

Misty Adoniou

‘A bright classroom that reflects school values, and celebrates children’s learning, is an important part of the teaching and learning puzzle. But a whisper of advice to beginning teachers from someone who has been there and done that - your time is precious. Prioritise lesson planning over classroom decoration.’
 

Rick Susman

Are school libraries doomed? In this ABC Radio program, the presenters interview Rick Susman, managing director of The Booklegger and founder of the Book Bank initiative.
 

Rob Stokes

‘In recent years the inher­ent tension between a liberal democratic society that ­encourages freedom of thought, freedom of religion and freedom of expression and schools subscribing religious doctrine that preach the ­opposite has become pronounced, says the NSW education minister.
 

Andreas Schleicher

The co-­ordinator of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) says that Australia must not be afraid or too proud to look to the world’s leading school systems, particularly those in Asia, to improve. Australia ranked 39th out of 41 countries in terms of quality education on the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) report card in June.
 

David Hetherington

‘Public education is the springboard for a child that grows up in a disadvantaged family, in a family with no working parent. It’s the public education system that has to provide that kid with a platform to go on and do great things in whatever area they choose,’ says the newly appointed director of the Public Education Foundation.
 

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Money matters

October 2017

Gonski 2.0

Media commentary on the distribution of Gonski 2.0 education funding suggests continued inequity between government and independent schools. Federal Education Minister Simon Birmingham asserts that the new funding model delivers fairer, needs-based funding.
 

School banking under scrutiny

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has promised to scrap the practice of paying schools a commission for every student that signs up to its Dollarmites program.
 

‘Do it in a Dress’

Students at Craigburn Primary School, in South Australia, recently raised more than $275,000 for a charity that helps educate girls in Sierra Leone and Uganda. In this article, principal Paul Luke describes his surprise at the international media attention that was sparked when an Australian politician described the fundraiser as ‘gender morphing’.
 

Principal on a hot tin roof

Jamie Cantrill, the principal of Bluegrass Elementary School, in the USA, recently spent a day working on the roof, after students exceeded sales targets on coupon books. The funds will be used to purchase new technology for the school.
 

Growth of homeschooling

Students with special needs are increasingly being home-schooled, at great financial cost to their parents, says Professor David Roy, from the University of Newcastle.
 

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Love the job

October 2017

Michael Brown

Dean of Junior Years Education, Methodist Ladies’ College,
Claremont, Western Australia

Describe your current school, its students, the demographics of your school community, and any special challenges and/or strengths.

Methodist Ladies’ College is a non-selective, independent school of the Uniting Church, located in a high socio-economic area of Perth, in Western Australia. It has an eclectic population with more than 25 different nationalities represented among the school population. The pre-kindergarten to year 12 college, built almost 110 years ago, has close to 1200 students attending classes across the campus, which is located next to the beautiful Swan River in Claremont. Of that student body, 390 students are in the junior years.

MLC is renowned for being a leading advocate of holistic learning and for living up to its motto: Per Ardua ad Alta (Through Striving to the Heights). This can be seen as a strength, as well as being a challenge, as the College finds the balance between conflicting pressures. The College maintains an open-access policy with a passion for inclusive education, as well as achieving outstanding academic results. Music and the arts feature strongly in the College’s offerings and leadership, service and the emotional wellbeing of students are fundamental to our holistic approach to education. It is for these reasons we do not support homework in the junior years and encourage the girls to enjoy life, and experience all there is on offer. This approach can sometimes be problematic with parents who have high expectations.

How many years have you been a school leader?

I’ve been Head of the Junior Years at MLC for eight years. Previously, I held a variety of positions, both here in Western Australia and at Yokohama International School, in Japan, where I was the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program coordinator. I was also one of the first Primary Years Program presenters for the Asia-Pacific region, back in the 1990s.

What motivated you to become a school leader (and when)?

I’ve always seen myself primarily as a passionate teacher with a panache for curriculum development. I embrace change and am always looking at how to improve learning and teaching. It was early in my career in 1984 that I realised the most effective way to bring about any change was to step forward and take on positions of responsibility. As a practicing Christian, I also found that the way I viewed the world and the core values I held regarding the way humans should treat each other helped to develop my leadership skills.

What was your first leadership role, where was it located, and what were some of your early challenges as a new leader?

My first leadership position was at Yokohama International School in Japan, when I took on the role of the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program (PYP) Coordinator. This was incredibly challenging as the school had a tradition of using American style textbooks. I clearly remember my first day in a year 6 classroom when I was presented with eight thick textbooks and told that this was the curriculum. As the PYP coordinator, I had to work with strong, diverse opinions regarding how a junior years curriculum should be delivered. Fortunately, there were a number of Australian and New Zealand teachers who supported the change to a trans-disciplinary model of learning. Parents were also problematic as they were used to a more formalised and structured approach to learning, even in year 1. It took considerable effort, patience and cajoling to shift the pedagogical direction. Luckily, I was guided by two exceptional leaders in education, had a network of PYP colleagues to call upon, and a conviction that the change was what was required for the children’s learning.

(continued on next page)

 

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Love the job

October 2017

Michael Brown

Dean of Junior Years Education, Methodist Ladies’ College,
Claremont, Western Australia

(continued from previous page)

As a new principal, what was the most useful lesson you ever learned from a more experienced principal colleague?

‘Phrase it in the question.’ Over the years I’ve worked at MLC, I’ve received wonderful guidance from the deputy principals and, from 2009, our present principal. They taught me to listen, to ask thoughtful questions and not to expect everybody to have the same work ethic and energy for change. They taught me to strategise, to plan, to prioritise, to build relationships, to bide my time and to be aware that not all teachers will immediately get the vision or idea. They also taught me the importance of living our College’s values in everything I do.

What makes you smile at work?

The students make me smile every day. Often in the morning, I wait by the door as it opens to be greeted by the happy, smiling faces of young girls who look me in the eye and say, ‘Good morning, Mr Brown.’ They make me smile when I go into the classroom and see their amazing work or when a student who has experienced some learning difficult shows huge development and comes running to my office with their work to show me. I smile when I hear about all their triumphs, successes and achievements. The problem is that I seem to be smiling all day long!

In managing your staff, what are your most valuable skills and beliefs?

I encourage staff to engage, to give feedback, to challenge, to push each other to extend themselves, to be open, caring and passionate. I recognise each individual teacher’s strengths and try to develop each person as an individual. I think recruitment is one of the most valuable things that I can do as Mmy focus is always about building collaborative teams with diversity of opinions. I operate an open-door policy. I try to visit classrooms daily and spend time with the girls and try to build relationships with each staff member. I try to model the professionalism and values that underpin our College, as I believe that the atmosphere of the school is shaped by leadership. I’m blessed by having a remarkable principal who is an exemplary role model and I try to emulate this same approach with my staff.

What was the best day you ever had as a school leader?

This probably occurred on the first day of the current school year. We are undertaking major building works to redevelop the junior years and over the summer period we created ‘The Village’ on part of the school oval for our pre-kindy to year 2 students for the next two years, while the new classrooms are built. It was an amazing feat to be ready in such a short period of time, and is a testament to the teamwork of everybody who works at MLC, from the grounds staff to the principal. Listening to the reactions of the girls and parents as they ventured into the temporary classrooms for the first time was probably one of my best days at school. It made me feel incredibly proud.

(continued on next page)

 

Love the job

October 2017

Michael Brown

Dean of Junior Years Education, Methodist Ladies’ College,
Claremont, Western Australia

(continued from previous page)

What was the toughest day you ever had as a school leader?

Having to go to court and get a VRO (violence Restraining Order) against a parent who was struggling with mental illness, but who was also getting too close to my own immediate family. I felt caught between the need to protect my own family and the implications that this action would have on the student under my care. It was an extremely complex and difficult time that caused immense emotional stress.

What was the funniest single thing that ever happened to you as a school leader?

I suppose this happened last year at our annual junior years production. I’ve become notorious for dressing up in various costumes over the years, either for Book Week or at the end of a concert. Last year, we were performing our version of ‘The Nutcracker’. At the end of the concert, I went on stage in front of an auditorium of 750 people to thank the girls and the various staff involved in staging the production. The lady in charge of costumes decided that I should go on as the ‘Sugar Plum Fairy’. Imagine an overweight, balding, 55-year-old man, dancing on to stage in a pink tutu, blonde wig and frilly undies. At first, the girls didn’t know who it was, as I used my ‘Dame Edna’ voice. Then the realisation sunk in and the auditorium fell into raucous laughter. Enough said on the matter.

What tips would you give new school leaders about staying positive and keeping their energy levels high?

Find the fun and laughter and don’t take yourself too seriously. I’d also suggest learning to leave issues and problems at school, and in your spare time find outlets for your energies that connect you with others not necessarily involved in education. I would also suggest that you don’t own problems or issues and, even in difficult situations, try to work collaboratively and share the burden.

If you could name just one thing that kept you going to school every day, even on the really difficult days, what would that be?

It has to be the focus on student learning. I still teach a mathematics enrichment class. The girls keep me balanced and aware of why I come to school each day.

How do you achieve (or are trying to achieve) a positive work-life balance?

I’ve always held the belief that work is work and home is home, and I try to keep the two separate. While I work long hours during the working week, I’ve tried to make sure that at the weekend I’ve plenty of time for my three children and also for my own interests and hobbies. I love travelling and during school holidays I like to undertake new adventures or trips. Luckily, my wife’s family owns a farm in the middle of nowhere and one day on the farm feels like a week in Perth. At the farm, I find the peace, quiet and a chance to rejuvenate and relax and go back to the simple things of life.

What special measures do you take (if any) to protect and nurture your own health and welfare?

My weekly Sunday golf game is sacrosanct. It’s when I connect with three other men who have nothing to do with education. Also, during the warm summer months, I love to get up with the sun and walk our family dog before I come into work. I also like to pop to my local café on the way to work and pick up my morning coffee. It’s a simple but pleasurable start to every day.

What do you see yourself as doing with your life after the principalship?

I still have a strong passion for learning and teaching, and consider doing this until retirement. One of my deputies is the same age and has been at the College for 31 years. We both joke that the girls will soon be purchasing Zimmer frames for us to get around school. We’re still both youthful at heart and, while our bodies might not be as responsive as they used to be, we’re still adventurous and willing to have a go. At our recent year 5 camp, we were the first ones to put up our hands and go on the flying swing. When I no longer find the enjoyment, the fun and the laughter, and things are becoming mundane, I will retire, buy a campervan and travel around Australia and New Zealand. That’s not going to be any time soon.


Michael Brown
Dean of Junior Years’ Education
Methodist Ladies’ College
Claremont, Perth, Western Australia

mbrown@mlc.wa.edu.au



 

Managing Editor, APPA 'Connected Leader'

Debra J. Crouch
E: debrajoycrouch@gmail.com
Mobile: 0413 009988



Connected Leader

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