Prospective candidates often ask how Shrub Oak International will develop its staff, expressing dismay that their current positions either don’t offer professional development, or they are bored with the ‘same old, same old’. We know that every day will be different, and growth opportunities will arise in traditional and nontraditional ways. At Shrub Oak, staff development is not a ‘check off the box’ activity — it is business as usual.
What is staff leadership?
Shrub Oak will build leaders at all levels of the school; leadership is not just about supervising others. It is about building individual capability so that every staff member can proactively take ownership over their role and work. This includes providing service excellence, integrating learning into goal driven solutions, and collaborating with others with integrity and respect, all to support student development.
Driving Inspirational Leadership.
The most inspirational and effective leaders are coaches, teachers and mentors to the core. They are confident that they need not know all the answers. They are also confident in their ability to ask the right questions. Like ‘osmosis’, effective leaders teach others to think. They enable others to process the world in ways they have never done before – with greater depth, richness and color.
By creating a safe space and uniquely valuing each staff member, their questions engage others to self-reflect, re-evaluate their premises, as well as cultivate curiosity. Engaging others to think out of their comfort zone promotes creative brainstorming. Seeing others experience an ‘ahha’ learning moment is exhilarating. This is development. Whether done on the fly or through more extensive conversation, staff will learn to further enhance their ability to analyze complex situations from multiple perspectives.
While requiring investment, the approach yields incredible returns. In the short term, it enables staff to work with greater proficiency, intensity and ultimate fulfillment. In the long term, it builds strong sophisticated succession and retention.
Shrub Oak Leadership Development
Our leadership embraces this approach. At Shrub Oak International inspiring learning is contagious. Integrating it in all that we do is seamless — like osmosis.
Like our approach to student development, our leaders know that development is not “one size fits all”. It must be uniquely tailored to the individual staff member. At Shrub Oak, we hire experienced staff who will continue to learn best practices through a multitude of professional development approaches. Our leadership knows that as teachers, coaches and mentors, inspiring their teams to think better, differently, and more creatively will allow them to support each student as the unique individuals that they are. It will also allow them to engage and inspire learning in others i.e. their colleagues, staff, students, and parents.
Our investment in our staff also inures to the benefit of our students’ parents. We hope it provides them with comfort and security. We want parents to know that their children are supported by highly talented individuals, whose passion and choice is to work collaboratively with them and their child to support their child’s development.