“We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men; and among those fibers, as sympathetic threads, our actions run as causes, and they come back to us as effects.”
― Herman Melville
Over the last two days, Principals and Senior Administration from our Board traveled to one of our Northern Schools to spend two days together, listening, connecting and sharing. Usually we meet in a more central location, and often we go home in the evening to take care of family responsibilities, after we meet during the day for meetings. Yesterday, after driving for 3 hours with two other Principals (which meant 3 hours of conversation), we spent the day meeting, touring @mrbhss school, talking as a Principal group, and then meeting for supper all together and finally sharing successes, challenges and experiences as we relaxed in a hotel room.
Throughout the day and evening, we were able to connect as colleagues, friends and competitors as we learned, played and questioned. During the day, we all took turns sharing “celebrations” from our schools (which helped us to really understand our similarities and uniqueness), and near the end of the day, Mr. Burke organized a “friendly” minute to win-in challenge with Gr. 7/8 students, OLOF Teachers and two Admin Teams while the rest of the students watched.
Being a pretty competitive group, the challenge was on and we were able to laugh with each other and relate on a personal level as we had noses in vaseline, stockings on our head and bean bags flying (and just for the record – our team won – and “we are the champions”).
Taking the time to connect, sharing “war” stories and relating to similar experiences really helped with the feelings of isolation that leaders can have, and it showed me the power that connecting can have – thank you to my fellow SNCDSB Principals and Senior Admin for connecting and developing relationships and opening up practices that help to make us all united and strong! @pklce @mrbhss @kfilane