Monday, 21 March 2016

How often do we think deeply about what we are doing? Purposeful actions evolve from a robust visioning process Part 2

Late last year, the New Zealand Catholic Primary Principal's Association (NZCPPA) participated in a
Image attributed to
visioning day led by Mary Wilson. You can read about the day in this post: "How often do we think deeply about what we are doing? A purposeful visioning process Part 1" at this link.

Special thanks to Teresa Edwards,  principal from St James Catholic School in Palmerston North and a member of the NZCPPA, who facilitated the next part of the process with the NZCPPA Executive in Taupo.

Teresa  reminded us that we were on a shared visioning journey and described the process we went through last time. Our initial goal was around clarity as an organisation. She explained we would review the shared vision from the first session and unpack the core values and plan our follow up actions. Teresa also shared the importance of every voice being heard "we all have personal and practical knowledge to contribute". As with the first session, the use of the robust and fair classic brainstorming and 10/4 consensus voting process meant every voice did get heard.

New Zealand Catholic Primary Principals Association Exec  
Shared vision  - Our picture of the future we want to create     

Below is the vision statement, the outcome of the collaborated work from the Part 1 Visioning Day. 
We shared our personal reflections on the vision. Teresa then asked us to apply the traffic light system to our personal reflections.
                                                            Applying the traffic lights 1:36 sec
The purpose of the Association is to assist Principals to advance education for the benefit of the public at Catholic Primary Schools Aotearoa New Zealand.

How we enact our Purpose/Vision
We have an agreed and shared understanding of our Catholic ethos.
We are informed and keep the Catholic ethos in the forefront of our thinking in relation to the current issues and debate.  
We consistently articulate this in all that we do and say.  
We are fully conversant and informed about the principles of Catholic social teaching and justice.
As the NZCPPA executive we ensure our time together throughout the year is used for its maximum impact.
Robust discussions and debates are always first on the agenda.  
We use tools that encourage robust dialogue and help with collaborative decision-making around big issues.  
Agendas are clear and concise.  
Meetings are run efficiently with balance to ensure issues are discussed and resolved in a timely manner.  
To allow the exec to be well informed we continue to invite guest speakers.  Meeting times are structured with regular breaks and visits to Catholic Schools.
We continually review the most effective ways to connect with our principals to ensure we clearly communicate and consult.
We use the online environment when appropriate.
We listen to our members.  
We have a clear structure to be effective in distributing and collecting information.
We have a constitution to clarify what we believe and how we operate as an executive.  
Exec members have regular communication with local principals formally and informally and ask for a set agenda slot at all local principal meetings.  
The NZCPPA website is promoted across NZ and is a one stop, purposeful, ‘go to’ place to provide strength and vision for all.
As the NZCPPA exec we Identify roles and responsibilities needed and gain clarity of responsibility for each member, including their ongoing role between meetings.  
These roles are clearly defined including a clear structure for allocation of tasks.  
Members of the exec have a clear job description of their role and responsibilities to ensure consistency of practice across NZ.  
There is allocated time to work on our areas of responsibility at each meeting.  An annual plan of actions is identified to ensure strategic goals are covered effectively and purposefully.  
This plan is reviewed at each quarterly meeting.  
As an exec we operate effectively as a team being an active and informed voice for the Catholic Primary Principals of New Zealand.

The Executive discussed about including the one sentence statement from the NZCPPA constitution at the top of this Vision. The next step was to unpack the core values. These would then guide our actions and contribute to a strategic plan for going forward.
                                              The what and the how of the visioning process 1:18
                                                  Classic Brainstorming and 10/4 voting 2:38 sec

                                         Moving from vision to actions: Unpacking the core values 4:22 sec
NZCPPA Exec member shard at work following the classic brainstorming process
Group consensus work around the core value :We value decision making that reflects our Catholic ethos.
Teresa reminded us to reflect on this slide as we worked our way through this robust process.
                                                 Know the strengths of the group  0.57 sec
Some Key Reminders from Teresa:

  • It doesn't matter who comes and goes, the vision will still be there. It is the shared vision that was created for the school or the organisation.
  • Trust the process. It's important.
  • The Core values are the things we do to make the vision come alive and happen
Next steps:
  • The group began to work on a shared collaborative document to turn the vision into action. This will become an action plan for future meetings.
  • The Otago Southland Catholic Primary Principal Association (OSCPPA) are going to work through a similar process as a way to strengthen leadership and networking capability for Catholic principals within the Dunedin Diocese. 
Special thanks to Teresa Edwards for allowing me to publish these videos and to the NZCPPA for their transparency around these dynamic visioning days. The NZCPPA are modelling equitable and robust processes and practices for Catholic principals, associations and schools across New Zealand.

Action without vision is only passing time, vision without action is merely daydreaming, but vision with action can change the world.

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