The spread of “innovative ideas” and best practices has posed a challenge for all school systems, no matter where they are located in the world. When innovative ideas and best practices take hold and permeate a school system, school improvement and system coherence grow, ultimately impacting student learning and achievement.
The 2018 ICSEI Conference held in Singapore focused on an exploration of scaling principles for deep learning. Andy Hargreaves opened the conference by focusing us on our moral purpose. He called upon us as educators who make a difference to involve ourselves in what he referred to as “unselfish scaling.” He reminded us that it is our moral imperative to spread best practice for the betterment of all.
Curriculum Services Canada participated in this conference sharing their recent work in Peru. Coaching and Mentoring Programs developed by CSC for Peru helped this country begin to spread best practice. Coaching and mentoring practices are truly demonstrations of unselfish scaling. The programs are built around people working together, to grow professionally, in order to help our students become their best.
Coaching and mentoring programs are powerful ways for teachers to learn as they engage in a process that is marked by trust and collaboration. Learning together with meaning and purpose and learning through relationship can bring about powerful change in both teacher beliefs and teacher practice. Professional collaboration builds a sense of individual efficacy and creates and influences the growth and development of collective efficacy. Mentoring and coaching pathways provide a wonderful example of “unselfish scaling.” These programs are built on the concept of partnership and evoke the most authentic forms of collaboration, respect, and reciprocal learning in teachers.
By Deirdre Kinsella Biss, International CSC Consultant