The NZ Ministry of Education announced sometime in 2014 that the future focus for NZ education would be on networks of schools working together and that PLD funding would be allocated to these schools to support their common goals.
In October 2015 I attended the ULearn Conference http://events.core-ed.org/ulearn. I attended a workshop by Principal Cherie Taylor-Patel who has been part of a West Auckland Cluster for the past 8 years http://www.educationalleaders.govt.nz/Leading-change/Leading-and-managing-change/West-Auckland-principals-collaborate.
She made some points worth noting:
- Make sure your community has a common vision and the same core values.
- What is your purpose and why are you collaborating?
- What network leadership experience do people in your network have
- What strengths and skills sit within the network already and what do you still need?
- What PLD will you need to get people collaborating?
- What is your sense of urgency within your group of schools?
- Ensure you have the right drivers – a reference to Michael Fullan “Choosing the right versus the wrong drivers” http://www.michaelfullan.ca/images/handouts/00_13_Short%20Handout.pdf
- Her advice – don’t rush- take time to build relationships and think things through.