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First-Time School Principals Supported By Govt

First-Time School Principals Supported By Government Initiatives

The Government is intent on giving first-time school principals the best opportunity to be effective as soon as they take up their new responsibilities, Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today.

Induction programmes announced in the Budget are among a package of initiatives to enhance the leadership and management capabilities of principals. The Budget set aside $27.4 million over four years, including $19 million of new funding, for the initiatives.

Trevor Mallard outlined details of the package today when he met with a reference group set up to advise on research that will identify the skills, knowledge and attributes needed by first-time principals.

The full package comprises:

- An induction programme to support all first-time principals during the first year after their appointments;

- Development centres to inform principals and their boards about effective professional development for individual principals over the short to medium term;

- A guideline on professional development which principals can consider undertaking at different times in their careers;

- An electronic network, with a facilitated discussion forum, examples of good leadership and management practice and leased laptops. This network will give principals the opportunity to collaborate and share good leadership and management practice, and to develop their information and communication technology skills.

“Principal capability is directly linked to teacher and school effectiveness and educational achievement,” Trevor Mallard said.

“This reference group includes organisations representing principals and experts on educational leadership.

“Information from the research it carries out will help with the design of induction programmes for first-time principals. Many first time principals are in small, rural schools and have not necessarily had management experience before. They are often particularly isolated and in need of support.

“The principals’ job is a complex and important one. Principals at all points in their careers need to seek to learn on a continual basis.

“These initiatives taken by the Government will give first-time principals the best opportunity to be effective in their roles and will help all principals and their boards to make the best choices from the wide range of professional development options currently available for principals.”

Ends


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