Getting the right ‘blend’ in the post lockdown world

No more islands - a new found collaboration and coordination across school

Tom Raw Deputy Headteacher


A slight digression at first, if I may: Summer 2003 I had just finished university and found myself flung into the job’s market with a degree that was very niche, to put it mildly, in terms of job prospects (not many employers were after a 2:1 in Drama & Theatre Studies). The call to public service and teaching was still three years away and I suddenly had to find skills within me that I’d never given much thought to. Upon walking into a raft of recruitment companies, I was given several tests in order to gauge my skills in computer literacy. Oh dear. I suddenly felt very much like the proverbial fish out of water. 

Fast forward seventeen years and the world entered a state of turmoil not seen since arguably the Second World War. All of a sudden, learning and leadership would need to be facilitated at a distance and the IT skills I had slowly (and at times reluctantly) acquired since 2003 needed to be brought to the fore. Many questions were raised: how will I teach remotely? Will face-to-face Google Hangout meetings be awkward? What books should I have in the background? How can I do this and be visible with a trusty clipboard or notebook?

The answer to all of the above was a resounding, ‘I don’t know.’ Of course, the clipboard is now gathering dust in the office that I’ve since forgotten the door code for and some decisions regarding what books I should have in the background were easy (enter Shakespeare, Poe, Dante…Dr.Seuss and Peppa Pig). However, I have found myself relishing in the challenge of remote leadership and it has allowed me the opportunity to work closely and coordinate initiatives with colleagues I had previously had little to do with in a professional capacity.

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