Fogarty Foundation executive officer, Annie Fogarty, told The Educator about some of the ways the EDvance program is helping principals improve their professional development.
“Principals and leadership team members complete coursework and are paired with an experienced ex-principal mentor when they first join the Fogarty EDvance program for their three year school improvement journey,” Fogarty said.
“In year one they learn a holistic perspective on school leadership, assess how well their school is doing and use diagnostic surveys of whole school effectiveness and leadership capability.”
Fogarty explained that in years two and three principals evaluate what is working, set their school’s future direction and lead change to foster a better learning and teaching environment.
“Throughout the three-year school improvement program, principals and leadership team members are delivered a custom designed program of course work and skill-building,” Fogarty said.
The program is aimed at discussing new research and effective practice on leadership in low socio-economic contexts. This content is then delivered via workshops, cohort meetings and one-on-one meetings with their mentors.
Fogarty shared some examples of the “ripple effect” the Fogarty Foundation has had so far across the education landscape in WA, saying that her group helps support and establish effective educational programs and initiatives.
“The Fogarty Foundation focuses on providing educational opportunities and fostering leadership across the spectrum of the community in WA, as we feel that this is the most effective way to ensure that WA is a smart state with strong communities.”
Fogarty said that achieving a ripple effect is “the very essence” of the Fogarty Foundation.
“It is depicted in our logo and underpins our philosophy, endeavours, directions and operations.
“The Foundation believes that the knowledge, experiences, tangible outcomes and impact of the projects we fund should be passed on to as many people as possible.”
Balga Senior High School principal, Geoff Harris, told The Australian last week that signing up to EDvance had been a critical factor in his school’s improved performance in recent years.
“In low-socio-economic schools, you have to address so many aspects that you become very time-poor, so the Fogarty mentoring program has been a great catalyst,” Harris said.
“The process develops you and your leadership team and gives you research tools to use, but it also monitors the planning process, reviewing it in a way so that it doesn’t get lost.”
For more information, please visit the Fogarty Foundation’s website here.