With the start of the new school year, the British Council resumed their Core Skills Training Workshops, with a focus on advanced training in Student Leadership. The teacher training Workshops are aimed at enabling students to lead in a range of different contexts and purposes both inside and outside of the classroom.
The Advanced Workshop has a prerequisite for participation and is open to the more than 1500 teachers and schools leaders who have participated in the introductory training already. Teachers across the island have to date been introduced to the six Core Skills: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving, Collaboration and Communication, Creativity and Imagination, Citizenship, Digital Literacy, Student Leadership, and Personal Development.
The value of student leadership in a global society is the basis for the teacher training workshops, in which teachers explore ways they can nurture leadership in themselves, their students and their colleagues. Nadene Newsome, Project Manager in Education at the British Council explains that teachers are being enabled to apply leadership skills to challenges while appreciating the role of self-awareness as a driver for leadership. The focus of the training is on strategies that enable teachers to consciously nurture and develop the leadership capacities of students.
This specific Core Skill highlights the difference between leadership and management. The British Council, in its Student leadership resource guide, outlines that leadership is often confused with management which is an important factor in the skill set, but leadership sets itself apart by being focused on what is possible, not predictable, the idea, not the doing. For students growing up in an increasingly diverse world where physical, social, cultural, political and technological boundaries are ever blurring, developing leadership attributes is as important as subject knowledge in helping them to prepare for an unknown world.
Newsome further outlined that teacher participants will be able to plan projects, lessons, and challenges that promote leadership in learning. These projects will focus on understanding the issues surrounding enabling students to lead meaningfully, as well as supporting to become more enthusiastic about their potential to lead in the school and in the community.
Master Teacher of Business Education at Holland High School, Dennesha Frazer explains that “As we aim to prepare students to be world class citizens, Student Leadership is a very useful Core Skill which should be integrated into all aspects of teaching and learning. At Holland, student leadership continues to drive the success of the academic and social programmes. The British Council continues to do a tremendous job in preparing educators to deliver the Core Skills to students.”
The Workshops are being held in Kingston Mandeville and Montego Bay and will continue up to March 2019.