Good afternoon! This isn’t a Coaching Letter, exactly, although it’s going out to all the Coaching Letter recipients. And you may receive this information multiple times, depending on which Center mailing lists you are on. If you receive the Coaching Letter but you are NOT on the Center’s mailing list and want to join it, email Bridget. If you do receive this information multiple times and that’s annoying, I’m sorry, and all I can say is a) it doesn’t happen often, and b) I just really wanted to make sure that the Coaching Letter recipients got this from me. And if there is anything in here that you think others in your circle would be interested in or benefit from, please, please, please forward this to them. Thank you!
I wrote an article about planning and strategy which is published in this month’s Kappan. Here is the link to the article. (This is the online version–if you are a Kappan subscriber you’ll be receiving your copy in the mail within about a week). You will recognize a lot of the same themes that come up in the Coaching Letter. The gist is that a plan and a strategy are not the same thing, and the need to get a plan done frequently gets in the way of being strategic. Unfortunately, getting an article published is not like the Oscars and I don’t get to make a speech, but I really want to thank my colleagues at the Center for all their work on these ideas and their implementation, and especially to Sarah Birkeland, Roberta Kurlantzick, Kerry Lord and Richard Lemons for their feedback on the article itself. Sarah is not named in the article but did more to help me think about the big idea than anyone else. And thank you to Jennie Weiner for partnering with me to push these ideas further.
In line with the ideas in the article, we are hosting a Strategy Workshop at Connecticut College June 27 & 28. The flyer is attached. Click here to register! From the blurb: “This workshop will provide educational leaders with a conceptual framework and tools to design, refine, and measure an organizational strategy for instructional improvement.” I’m really hoping that there will be educators from a variety of districts in a variety of roles who want the time and space to take a step away from their daily obligations to think big picture about their work and the throughline to the classroom.
Separately, we are hosting a Coaching Workshop on April 29 at Mercy. The flyer for this is attached also. Click here to register! “This workshop is for educators with some training and experience in coaching who want to come together to hear new ideas, share with other coaches, practice coaching, and reflect on their work.” This is intended as a kind of masterclass for anyone with supervision and coaching in their ambit, whatever their title or job description, who has had coaching training (with us or somebody else).
Also, the Center has a long history of facilitating summer workshops for district leadership teams that are focused on improving their instructional leadership capacity. Last year we piloted multiple-district retreats so that several teams could work on their own problems of practice but also learn from one another. These were very well received and so that’s one area where we’re trying to expand our services. I’m attaching a flyer for that also, and If you are interested in finding out more, email us.
Finally, and you’ll be hearing more about this, the next selection in the Reading for Leading series is The Fearless Organization: Creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace for Learning, Innovation, and Growth by Amy C. Edmondson. We’re changing the format this time around and inviting you to get creative on Twitter! You only have 280 characters in a tweet, but you have so many other options to express your thoughts. More to come on this, but please get your hands on the book and start reading! #FearlessOrg #CCSCatwork
Thank you for your help in getting the word out about all these things—they represent so much work by so many talented people. Please let me know what you think of the article! And please let me know if there is anything I can do for you. Best, Isobel