11 Jun Empowering 21st Century Leaders and Learners
Leaving a great job in an amazing International Baccalaureate school was a very difficult decision to make! I have spent almost 10 years working, living and learning in Asia culminating in a Head of School position of a K-12 four-program International Baccalaureate World School. The opportunities of international school leadership have been unlimited! I have made friends and strong connections with people from all over the world, and implemented some really positive changes into international education. I have grown so much as a person and as a global citizen. But last year I finally decided to come home!
“Why?” I hear you ask.
I’m deeply passionate about two things in my life. One is my family and the other is education. It was time for me to come home to be closer to my family. I was never homesick during the time I was away, but I was often ‘peoplesick’. I missed family members and friends deeply.
In the last few years, something else had started to bother me too. I started to feel that I was not doing enough to educate 21st Century learners. Sure I was doing all that I could in my school to provide the best learning outcomes for the students there, but I started to realize it was time for me to create a new global enterprise to empower learners and leaders around the world.
I’d been fortunate to hear Professor Yong Zhao speak at an international conference a few years back and he really struck a cord with me. I wanted to discover how to be truly entrepreneurial and how to help schools develop entrepreneurial global competencies too.
Zhao presents a different framework for developing schools and students that embraces the challenges of the 21st Century. He believes that if we are to seize the opportunities presented by globalization and the rapid growth of technology, to learn and work with international partners we will be required to develop expertise in languages and cultures, mutual respect, empathy and develop a deep appreciation for each other’s situations and demands. Zhao calls these skills and knowledge entrepreneurial global competencies – that is having the perspective, attitude, knowledge and skills to discover opportunities, identify needs, secure investment, seek ideas, and build partners across national borders. Schools need to create opportunities for students to develop global competencies by becoming global enterprises.
So here I am happily living in Australia, appreciating the amazing gift the last 10 years has been for me and getting on with creating my global enterprise when Melbourne’s The Age newspaper and the Sydney Morning Herald featured articles about me in the Business Section this past weekend.
I couldn’t believe it. What a homecoming!
If I can help you grow and develop as a 21st Century Leader or if I can help you think strategically and create a 21st Century plan to empower the students at your school please do not hesitate to contact me at Think Strategic.