Learning has no end as long as teachers are in service. We can’t do away with this, not even as the heads of our respective schools. We’re just like a glass of juice. Once it is empty, it needs to be refilled.
Teachers in my district recently completed a 3-day seminar-workshop on ICT and now we’ve just attended another 3-day seminar on the Result-based Performance Management System (RPMS). The goal of this software is to improve the efficiency of school heads, as well as teaching and non-teaching personnel. Our division has five working sections. They are clusters I, II and III, a high school group, and the non-teaching group. We all came together to review the data on our performance over the past year.
The RPMS management system was introduced and implemented last year and now we needed to go over our accomplishments for the first year. We had to review our major final outputs. In our case as school heads, we went over our 5 key results areas: instructional leadership, learning environment, human resource management, and development. We also looked at parental involvement and community leadership, and at school leadership, management and operations.
We had a hard time reviewing the broad spectrum of educational and management concerns. So we grouped ourselves according to our clusters, groups or by the nature of a job. We tackled different types of accomplishment, according to enrollment data and location. Whatever best practices we reached, we reconsidered them and adopted if they’d worked. If not, the group had to adopt new governing principles to accomplish their tasks.
Well, do I sound a bit technical? Anyway, this is how we organised ourselves to meet our goals for our students. The principle of organisation is fundamental in getting things in order. The next is identifying the problem and defining it to get rid of confusing factors. Then finding the appropriate solutions to the problem. Finally, putting solutions in writing in the form of an action plan. As a rule of thumb, our guiding principle is, “If we can measure it, then we proceed. If not, we forget it.”
I was attentive in listening to the School Division Superintendent, who did the lecture. I didn’t want to miss anything because I have to share what I learned with the next school head, who will take my place after I retire in October. The afternoon session became really serious. Everyone appeared to be formal. Only a few were raising their questions for clarification or added information. But the SDS finally managed to get us to smile.
We were relieved from the stress of our workshop when we were given a break. We took some time to rehearse a special program number to present for our SDS’s birthday. Ours was a localised song and an acronym of praises for the first name of the SDS. Others sang a love song or showed a video with selected pictures of the superintendent, accompanied by praises. The short program ended with Ma’am blowing out a candle and the giving of gifts.
Our energising song was so timely. It says, “We’re so happy. Oh, so happy. Sing with me.” We went home from this first day of our seminar feeling happy, with a reserved energy for the next two days to come.
Image by the author, Gil Camporazo