Currently, the position and competences of school principals are focused on a wide scope of duties that they have to perform within their position. They are overburdened not only by the wide range of tasks, but also by the ever changing conditions in times of crisis. Experience shows that schools with an established shared management and with roles and responsibilities appropriately distributed to staff, are more flexible in responding to new stimuli and rapidly changing conditions. This means that organisations that are governed through a participatory management model are more able to benefit from agility, innovation and cooperation, as opposed to those governed autocratically.
In order to achieve this goal, starting from 1st May 2022 the Dr. Josef Raabe Slovakia professional publishing house in partnership with six partners from three countries started to implement the international project LEADERSHIP ACADEMY. The LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project aims mainly at supporting school principals and school managers in the area of leadership and creating a cooperative environment within the school.
The objective of the project is to develop an innovative approach to address the needs of school principals and school managers through the use of participatory approaches, coaching and distributed leadership practices, as well as to increase their effectiveness for the benefit of the school community and thus contributing to a more modern, dynamic, engaged and more professional environment inside the school. The LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project will support school principals to be prepared to integrate best practices and new methods into their daily activities and help them to be open to synergies with organisations working in different fields.
What is the project about?
• A combination of different methods to ensure that today’s school principal can successfully overcome the crisis, cope with increased autonomy and lead his school towards effective digital transformation.
• About developing an innovative approach to address the needs of managing staff through the use of participatory approaches, coaching and distributed leadership practices, as well as increasing their effectiveness for the benefit of the school community.
• About improving the leadership competencies of school principals and school managers
What are the planned outcomes of the project?
– Leadership Academy handbook – methodological guidance for principals and school managers in “VUCA” (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity) conditions, focusing on topics such as: effective leadership styles, crisis management, resilience, change management, delegation, motivation, communication, etc.
– The Leadership Academy online platform – will include electronic books and information on leadership; examples of good practice in school management and case studies from the project; a database of coaches who are available for school managers to choose in order to sustain transformational change in applied leadership practices.
– Leadership Academy – professional circles methodology a methodology for creating and leading structured professional development circles for school principals and managers, facilitated by coaches, where school principals share their day-to-day challenges and discuss them in relation to leadership, thus building a peer learning process.
What is the objective of the project?
Our efforts will be focused on the development of a comprehensive set of tools that will include all three project outcomes. Cooperation between primary schools, educational institutions and the publishing house will not only contribute to high quality outcomes, but also ensure that the target groups are provided with resources that are extensively tested and evaluated to ensure the maximum applicability, usefulness and potential for further use.
Who is the project for?
The target group of the LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project is:
– primary school principals in particular,
– and primary school managers as well.
Who are the project partners?
– The project partners are organisations that associate and organise primary schools and are the largest associations of their kind within a particular country (Association of Primary Schools of Slovakia, Association of Directors of Primary Schools of the Czech Republic and Union of Employers in the Public Education System in Bulgaria), renowned educational institutions (CHAT Ltd, Academy for School Principals Ltd and AdminSoft Ltd).
Meeting of LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project partners
On 8 June 2022, the 1st international meeting of the LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project partners was held in person. The coordinator and organizer of the partner meeting was the professional publishing house Dr. Josef Raabe Slovakia, s. r. o. (SK). The meeting was attended by representatives of all LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project partners from Slovakia, Czech Republic and Bulgaria:
– CHAT Ltd (SVK),
– Association of Primary Schools of Slovakia (SVK),
– Academy for School Principals Ltd (CZ),
– Association of Principals of Primary Schools of the Czech Republic (CZ),
– AdminSoft Ltd (BG),
– Union of Employers in the Public Education System in Bulgaria (BG).
The meeting included the following points:
– introduction of individual partners,
– presentation of the LEADERSHIP ACADEMY project and getting acquainted with the project documentation and funding principles,
– beginning of work on the 1st intellectual outcome (draft of the structure and content),
– discussion about the module and structure of the 1st intellectual outcome,
– work plan for the period of 07/2022 – 05/2023.
The objective of the meeting was:
– to establish project management guidelines (administrative and financial),
– to agree on the title, structure and content of the 1st intellectual outcome – the LEADERSHIP ACADEMY manual,
– to plan the sequence of steps in the creation of the 1st intellectual outcome and its testing.
What is to follow:
– work on the methodological manual for primary school principals, creation of a working version (September – October 2022), testing of the working version (November – December 2022),
– incorporation of comments from primary school principals and preparation of the final version (January-March 2023),
– preparation for the 2nd project partners meeting in March 2023 in Prague,
– translation of the final version EN/CZ/SK/BG (April-May 2023),
– presentation of the LEADERSHIP ACADEMY manual at a conference organised by the professional publishing house Dr. Josef Raabe Slovensko, s.r.o. (June 2023).