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Strong Leaders

Building leader wellbeing and capability through collaborative networks
QASSP currently budgets $50,000 for the Service Officer role and over recent years there have been ongoing strategies to secure sponsorship support to extend the service. This has finally been successful. Previous communications to State Council and direct to members have informed that DETE has provided an additional $75,000 to support QASSP in establishing a ‘Strong Leaders’ program.

DETE has supported the initiative in recognition of QASSP’s belief that an investment in leader wellbeing and capability is an investment in effective school leadership.

DETE and QASSP are in agreement that strong leadership and strong personal wellbeing are closely related. Leadership is ‘an inside job’ it starts from within. Strong, resilient school leaders provide the very best support for staff, parents and students.

Leaders first lead themselves in order to lead others and in turn to lead their school community. The stronger the leaders – the stronger the school. The initiative will assist in:

  • Providing training for Branch Service Officers to increase their confidence and competence to provide support to individual school leaders at a local level.
  • Expanding the level of direct support and training from the QASSP Service Officer.
  • Inviting all classified officers and aspiring leaders within Education Queensland to form a mutually supportive network for their personal wellbeing and professional growth.
  • Assisting individuals (particularly those in rural, remote, and small schools) in forming or joining a network. Individual school leaders who do not wish to form a network may access support directly with the QASSP Service Officer or a delegate.
  • Providing professional development for wellbeing and personal and professional growth through literature, web conferences and other means.
  • Providing face-to-face workshops at the local level based on periodic needs analysis. Face-to-face workshops are to be provided in rural, remote areas at close to or at metropolitan prices.

The momentum for the initiative is well underway with the first cohort of Branch Service Officers participating in the inaugural training program in Brisbane on 31 October and 1 November 2013. This was truly a landmark event being the first ever training for Branch Service Officers.

I had the pleasure of co-facilitating the training with President Hilary Backus. Specialist input came from Steve Francis of Gr8 People, Michael White of Aus Identities, psychologist Lawry Scandar of Osiris Group and John Webster who chairs the Service Portfolio for QASSP.

Congratulations and thanks to the inaugural participants from: Townsville, Ingham, Burdekin, Tablelands, Rockhampton, Central Queensland, Mount Isa, Logan, Sunshine Coast South, Brisbane West, Ipswich, Brisbane South, OEEC, Gold Coast North, Gold Coast South, Beenleigh, MacIntyre and Beaudesert branches.

A comment from one participant is typical of the evaluations:

This initiative is an opportunity to greatly enhance the support networks for school leaders across the State. Something like this has been needed for a long time.

We are a diverse state and how we ‘build leader wellbeing and capability through collaborative networks’ will vary greatly depending on your local context. This may be particularly true for rural and remote locations.

I implore you to support your Branch Service Officer as they investigate with you the ways (under the banner of QASSP) that will work best for you and your colleagues. They will promote and facilitate consultation. The degree of local success will be determined by your individual and collective engagement.

The remaining cohort of BSOs will be trained in Brisbane on 27 and 28 February 2014. We look forward to having your branch represented at that training if you were not part of the inaugural cohort.

The Strong Leaders program is undoubtedly an opportunity to further establish QASSP as the champion of leader wellbeing and capability right across Queensland.


Branch Service Officers are invited to attend Strong Leaders Training in Brisbane, 27 & 28 February 2014.

Travel and accommodation provided. Contact magdalene@qassp.org.au

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