Professional Standards for School Principals: Tuvalu Initial Workshop
January 15-22, 2013 This workshop focused on the development of professional standards for school principals in Tuvalu. It was the first of two workshops to examine and develop capacity for school leaders in order to increase student achievement. This project is part of the capacity development programme to increase education for all, one of the overriding goals of UNESCO’s global strategy for education. Five countries in the Pacific region are part of this strategy, Kiribati, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
Education for all does not just mean ensuring that all children have the opportunity to go to school, but when they go to school they also receive a quality education. It is not just enough to improve the quality of the teaching standards, as was done in the past, it is also important to improve the overall quality of school leadership and management to allow teachers to become more effective in their roles.
Participants were encouraged to discuss and examine various aspects of their roles and they came up with four broad areas of responsibility, leadership, management, teaching and learning and community partnership. These categories were further broken down into key objectives and the criteria needed to carry out these roles and the key indicators needed to support performance in each area. Participants discussed the evidence that was needed to determine whether or not principals meet these criteria and how they could be supported to be more effective. Each of the four key components are part of effective school leadership as determined in Tuvalu and guided by criteria develop for the unique situation in Tuvalu.
The final result from the workshop was a set of 9 key indicators under the four areas of effective school leadership that could serve as a guide for effective leadership in schools and the evidence required to demonstrate this. The overall objective is to improve the quality of school leadership and management and in this way contribute to the improvement of learning and teaching in classrooms and impact positively on students’ in schools.
The final workshop on professional standards for school principals will be held later in 2013 to develop the capacity of principals in the implementation of these standards.