An article in the Telegraph caught my eye this week when it suggested that there was a leadership crisis facing schools in the next five years unless steps are taken to reverse current trends. The article explains that a new report released by The Future Leaders Trust, Teach First and Teaching Leaders, suggests that unless we increase our efforts to develop teachers to become school leaders, a gap of 14,000 to 19,000 head teachers and deputy heads could emerge nationally by 2022. The cause of the decline are a continuation of existing trends: rising pupil numbers, the growth of academy trusts creating new leadership posts, and the leadership population approaching retirement. There are over 20,000 schools in England so the suggestion is that each school could be affected in at least one senior leadership role. While these are tough challenges for the education sector, I imagine we may not be alone. I believe that, for the good of all sectors of the economy, growing leaders can start young! The key theme from my IAPS conference in September centred on ‘Leading Change’. Our children will need to be able to embrace not only leadership in their adult lives, but also a changing landscape in their working environment, and it is our responsibility to prepare them for this.
Our PSB curriculum is designed to stimulate creative thinking and problem solving. Children are encouraged to ask questions and develop critical thinking abilities. These are crucial skills, along with the challenge to work with others in a team, to take responsibility for their own learning and to continue learning through every opportunity and experience they are offered. There are many strands that are woven together in the process of personal development and leadership, but I am delighted that through the PSB, pupils of all ages are being exposed to this way of learning about and developing themselves.
Duncan Sinclair, Prep School Headmaster