Always great when someone understands and appreciates the experiences that have gone into the compilation of a book. Such was the case with Colin Hill, who compiled this review of my book Future Proof Your School for UK Ed Chat, a portal for motivated educational professionals.
Second-guessing the next initiative, or policy change that is likely to impact on schools seems to have been normalised in recent years, with school leaders needing to be prepared for scrutiny, readiness for change, and accountability of key decisions made. They fail to give you a crystal ball when you undertake leadership training so, without such a crucial and magical future telling piece of equipment, how can schools ensure that they are best placed for the future challenges, opportunities and obstacles that are coming down the road?
In his book, David W Hughes offers schools an opportunity to use common sense, foresight and prioritising the demands on staff energy to the central task of all schools – to achieve the best engagement of and learning outcomes for all learners (including the staff themselves). Exploring key issues, including the culture within a school, promoting sustainable changes, and the CPD conundrum, David presents each issue looking at key critical issues, before proceeding through a triangulation lens involving some important questions that school leaders need to reflect on. Accompanied by many humorous and perceptible cartoon illustrations, the book encourages leaders to recognise, develop and utilise the teaching expertise already embedded within the school, whilst empowering and involving everyone within your community to play a part in future developments.
This is not an over-preachy, inaccessible book. On the contrary, where this book succeeds is the empowerment that the reader feels when reading through the case files, short chapters and triangulation points revealing that, in fact, it is quite easy and sensible to future proof your school community for the many unexpected challenges that will inevitably come.
*RRP, correct at time of publication.