24 March 2017
← Developing a Shared Vision
Developing a Shared Vision
Dear Parents and Caregivers,
A School Strategic Plan is central to the growth and development of every school. The St Patrick’s College Strategic Plan is a five year plan, and it is due to be updated in 2018 to guide us through to 2022.
To assist the College Leadership Team in the development of our future strategic direction, we would like to consult with our community to develop a shared Vision for St Patrick’s College. This Vision would be a statement that would set out a compelling image of where we would like to be as a College in five years time.
Whilst it might be quicker and more convenient for the College Principal and College Leadership Team to simply write this vision ourselves and share it with the community, we would miss the wisdom of others who also have great stake in what happens at St Patrick’s College. Kouzes & Posner (2006) put it so well in their statement …“People do not want to hear their leader’s vision but their own aspirations – they want to see themselves in the picture of the future that is being painted”.
Once decided, this Vision will direct our planning and considerations into the next five years. In essence, it will direct the actions of the community. It is our assertion that the actions of the community will create the desired culture for the College and this culture will, in turn, reflect what is important to the St Patrick’s community. Such important decisions should have the input of the whole community not just those in leadership positions.
The diagram below illustrates the many parts of our College that need to have input into the direction of such a Vision.
As illustrated, there are external bodies (and documentation) such as EREA and Catholic Education who also have a significant stake in what we do as a school.
Put simply, our shared Vision should address the following three areas:
(1) our purpose as a school;
(2) what we value most as a school community; and
(3) what we want to look like or aspire to during the next five years.
This requires us to not only include the Mission of Catholic Education and Charter of EREA, but also how these concepts fit within the context of St Patrick’s College. This would mean that we not only look at the purpose of our school, but also state what attributes we would like for our staff and students who play the most significant role within the College community.
Almost all of our more contemporary College reviews have indicated that the concept of developing community is of paramount importance at St Patrick’s. However, the notion of what is a good community means different things to different people. In reality, in its truest sense a community is simply a gathering of people. Therefore, rather than use the word community as an indicator of significant value to St Patrick’s, we need to name what we value most as a community of people. Finally, our Vision needs to look at the physical environment of the College campus. This includes the play areas, learning spaces, building designs, issues of sustainability etc.
Once the shared Vision is composed, it will be used as a guide for the development of the new College Strategic Plan, the new College Master Plan, and the College budgets and as a baseline for any other decisions that may have to be made regarding the future directions of St Patrick’s College.
Feedback will be given from the College Leadership Team (CLT), College Staff, a sample of the student body and responses from the parent body. Work has already commenced on collecting feedback from the CLT and staff members, and student representatives across a range of age groups will also have the opportunity to give feedback in the early weeks of Term 2. Consequently, we are now turning to the parent body for your feedback. In all cases, the following four questions have been asked:
- What is the purpose of St Patrick’s College as a school?
- What is the (preferred) key attribute(s) of (a) the students and (b) staff members that we form during their time at the College?
- When reflecting upon the community of St Patrick’s College, what are the things that are valued (or should be valued) most?
- What should we consider when planning an environment that reflects the type of school that we are and the things that we value most? The environment includes the physical spaces within the College campus.
Once the feedback is finally collected from each of the stakeholders, we will table it in categories from the different respondents such as CLT, staff, student etc and look for similarities in each of the areas of the questions. This information will then be used to develop the statement. I will keep the community informed of the progress and collation of data and information collected.
How You Can Assist?
There are two ways in which the parent body can give feedback to the College.
1. ONLINE FEEDBACK
Please use the link below to provide your feedback online to each of the above questions, by Friday 21 April.
2. PARENT FORUM - THURSDAY 20 APRIL 2017
Join us for a Parent Forum on Thursday 20 April (Week 1 of Term 2), where I will give a short presentation and ask you to participate in a group workshop to provide feedback to the above questions. The presentation will be very brief and commence at 6:00pm. The venue within the College will be given closer to the date, once the number of attendees is determined.
Please use the link below to confirm your attendance.