Katie thinks it is unacceptable that although staff say they will work together actions speak louder than words and this is not currently happening. Unfortunately, when Katie began the program 3 out of 5 teachers were dissatisfied and stressed, 45% of beginning teachers did not intend to be teaching in 10 years’ time with 30-50% leaving the profession in the first five years and more than two thirds of teacher reported that appraisals of their work were done purely to meet administrative needs. Katie thinks that a lack of accountability is the root cause of this problem and she believes in a school where all staff work together collaboratively to embed their words into change and action.
The key to Katie’s initiative was to develop a positive school culture where all staff feel valued and work collaboratively together, starting with the leadership team and staff.
Katie started by speaking to her principal who fully supported the project. She then worked on staff wellbeing by recommencing a Friday happy hour, engaging with the wellbeing and social committee and setting up a staff canteen to provide snacks prior to staff meetings. To improve the wellbeing of the leadership team she presented a pitch to the principal proposing time limits on leadership meetings with a time keeper, strict agendas, and ensuring that everyone gets a say.
Katie’s initiative has already positively impacted leaders at her school by providing them with a task/area they are now sharing responsibility for. Although it is hard to quantify the impact her initiative is having on teacher wellbeing, teachers certainly seem to be enjoying it!
Like the idea?
Katie would love your support for The Happy Project, or for you to start a similar program in your school, and she’d love to hear about any ideas you have or lend a hand where she can. Shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to get in touch with Katie and we can connect you. Feel free to cheer her on in the comments below as well.
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