The Community of Practice: Collaborative approaches and leading change.

By Carolyn Marino

This community of practice (COP) is a year long initiative to support leaders to strengthen collaborative approaches within their schools.

We were pleased to welcome 27 educators from across eight schools in Tāmaki Makaurau to our first COP hui. Due to Covid restrictions this hui was held online. 

The reason we have chosen a community of practice approach to learning is to encourage the development of a network of educators who can learn with and from each other.  By stimulating thinking through a provocation, each hui aims to support leaders to gather inspiration and energy from working alongside colleagues on a similar journey.  Each hui will build on the last, as each school team explores their own school’s challenges, and shares their journey when meet together. 

Image by: Carolyn Marino

The feedback from our first hui suggests our provocation –‘Why collaborate? What does this really mean and what conditions set us up for successful collaboration?‘- hit the mark by stimulating valuable discussion and reflection:

“The provocations were good to get discussions going with other schools; hearing their views and experiences was really useful to gain perspective on where we are at”.

“This has really helped me clarify the concept of collaboration”.

Image by: Carolyn Marino

A common theme in the feedback was how much people value the time talking and developing shared understandings together:

“I found the time to talk with other teachers and see where they are at, with regards to their school’s journey, very valuable”.

“[It was] great to be able to talk with other schools”. 

“Being able to talk with our group of staff at the end and make a plan for next steps was valuable-I feel like we have a purpose and a way forward. Thank you”!

Image by: Carolyn Marino

We look forward to following the ongoing development of this community of practice during the year. If you would like your school team to be involved in a COP, please email Carolyn Marino: