Kia ora tatou,
The first lockdown showed us a lot about ourselves. As part of our work with principals throughout COVID-19, we have been asking and listening on what they feel they have done well, what challenged them, and what concerns they have about our recovery as a nation.
A key point raised by many principals in the last few months has been the way COVID-19 perpetuated and highlighted existing structural inequities in education. From device access to learners having to financially support their families, there are stories from all corners of how the pandemic affected some significantly more than others.
As we face down the prospect of another flare-up of the pandemic, it seems an appropriate time to let you know how we plan to focus on these issues of equity in the months ahead.
Springboard Trust is an educational change organisation – we aren’t going to fix inequity with our programmes and workshops. But we do create intimate, trusting relationships with principals – most of whom have their own variation on the stories above. And as an organisation aiming to improve outcomes for all young New Zealanders, we’d like to step up our focus in this area.
That begins with a focus on equity in educational leadership. How decisions are made, what voices are represented when that happens, and who gets left out – and why. Over the coming months, we will be presenting perspectives from both within and without education on the issue of equity, with a laser focus on what leaders can do to affect change. Practical actions and steps that take all New Zealand schools closer to equitable opportunities for all.
You'll see some results of this work very soon, with our new podcast from esteemed Māori academic Te Tuhi Robust. Bringing together a massive range of perspectives on education, his limited series will be essential listening.
Our focus will continue in events on Leading for Equity, with a range of world-class speakers tackling what it means to develop equitable practice in school leadership.