Sunday, August 11, 2013

New Beginnings

It's time to bring Principal Possum out of hibernation!

I have been given this great opportunity to be Foundation Principal of Hobsonville Point Secondary School and have wanted to blog about this journey but for many reasons this hasn't happened. However, there are others who are doing this and if you want to track the journey I suggest you follow the blogs in my Blog List to the right.

Even though I'll reflect on how things are going I'll most probably do a Maurie and spend more time blogging about my interests and crazy escapades, including how Leigh and I are making the most of living in our new town, Auckland.

Brief Summary So Far
I started as Foundation Principal last October and spent a couple of months deschooling and reading and planning with Daniel Birch, Lisa Squire and Sharyn Afu who lead Hobsonville Point Primary School.

Leigh and I bought a wee whare in Massey and moved in in mid January and set about exploring the area by visiting local beaches and trekking in the Waitakares. Our daughter, Lucy, came home from the UK for a few weeks to join us but too quickly returned to the UK.

At the start of February I was joined by my fantastic DPs, Lea Vellenoweth, Claire Amos and Di Cavallo. Since then we have been working very hard on planning for our school. They bring a great range of experience, skills, knowledge, experience and personalities. We travelled together to New York, Rhode Island, Boston, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver visiting some great schools. Claire and I then travelled on the Apple Schools tour to San Francisco.

One of our most important jobs was to appoint 8 Leaders of Learning and these passionate teachers joined us 2 weeks ago. After a few days they shared how they were feeling and I ahve included some of their comments:

  • have enjoyed exploring why I got into teaching
  • discovering I am different to what I thought
  • enjoying talking about great practice
  • have been pulled back into the energy of teaching and learning
  • real sense of whanau
  • great buzz and level of enthusiasm
One of the neat things we did was present all new staff members, including ourselves, with a ukulele and we have formed the HPSS Ukulele Orchestra which all new staff members for ever and a day must join!

This week we appoint 7 more teachers for our school.

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