Approximately 200 educational leaders gathered at the Louis Riel Board Office on Thursday, January 31, 2019 to learn from James Nottingham, a U.K.-based leader in educational thinking.
Nottingham is the Executive Director of Challenging Learning, an educational consultancy firm that specializes in transforming the latest educational research into strategies that work in the classroom. He is also the creator of the Learning Challenge, a model that encourages students to engage in deep learning.
The all-day session brought together principals, vice-principals, and other educators from both the Louis Riel and St. James Assiniboia school divisions for a unique joint professional development experience.
Ron Pelletier is the Principal of Collège Sturgeon Heights Collegiate in the St. James Assiniboia School Division (SJASD). "[This] is a great opportunity to bring the leaders of two divisions together. It gives us an opportunity to compare our stories and share ideas," he says, adding "James is pushing us to challenge what we do and the world is a better place when we all revisit our mindsets."
Henrietta Hoch is the Principal of Buchanan School, also in SJASD. "My takeaway from this morning is to make it interesting. To challenge kids with interesting tasks that will increase the learning," she says.
Diane Lamoureaux is the Vice-Principal of Collège Béliveau in the Louis Riel School Division (LRSD). She says that educators can't settle for the status quo. "We always talk about allowing students to work in their comfort zone and in their learning style and that isn't doing them any favours. We need to let them challenge themselves. Working out of their comfort zones will allow them to grow and learn," she says.
Darcy Cormack is the Principal of Lavallee School in LRSD. "As educators, our attitudes about failure and our response to student struggles will greatly impact how they engage future challenges and develop a successful identity based on the merits of effort and hard work," she says, explaining that praising a student for a simple task might actually discourage them from trying, and failing at first, at a harder task.
Christian Michalik is the Superintendent of LRSD. "I love that James had us sustain a day-long conversation to explore our individual values and beliefs as educational leaders serving our school communities. A conversation about values and beliefs inevitably leads to discomfort. But, that uneasiness is essential if we are to learn and grow as a community of educators with shared
values and beliefs," he says. "As leaders, we set the culture in our schools, in the service of teachers setting the culture in their classrooms. And, this culture expresses itself in what our students tell us, and more importantly, each other. I'm excited to see what tomorrow brings when we learn in community with our teachers."
James Nottingham will facilitate a day of learning on Friday, February 1, 2019 for LRSD and SJASD teachers at the RBC Convention Centre. Approximately 2,000 teachers are expected to attend from both divisions.
-posted on January 31, 2019 by Communications Coordinator Michelle Lancaster.