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Leader NAPD - National Association of Principals and ...
The Leader August 2015 Issue 1_Exec Report No.7 March 2008.qxd 23/07/2015 09:44 Page 1



               Information Edition – 2015
      August 2015                       A Publication of the National Association of
                                               Principals & Deputy Principals            NAPD
                                                                                         PRINCIPALS   AND   DEPUTY PRINCIPALS
Leader NAPD - National Association of Principals and ...
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                                                                                                                                                     PRINCIPALS   AND   DEPUTY PRINCIPALS

                       FROM THE EDITOR FROM THE EDITOR
                                                                                                                                  Derek West
                                                               Leader                                                             Email: derek.west43@gmail.com
                                                                                                                                  Mobile: 087 289 1443

                                                               Information                                                        ARTICLE SUBMISSIONS

                                                               Edition –                                                          How to contact Leader
                                                                                                                                  You can send your comments, replies,
                                                                                                                                  letters to the editor etc.
    Photo: Nick West

                                                               2015                                                               E: derek.west43@gmail.com

                                                                                                                                  Articles produced in this publication

                       T     his special edition of Leader brings together as much information as it can for the NAPD
                             member, old or new.
                       It acts as a reference store, primarily to record the structures of the Association and to list the key
                                                                                                                                  solely represent the opinions of the
                                                                                                                                  authors and do not necessarily reflect
                                                                                                                                  those of NAPD. Every effort has been
                                                                                                                                  made to fulfil requirements with regard
                       personnel involved.                                                                                        to reproducing copyright material.
                                                                                                                                  NAPD will be glad to rectify any
                       Under the Directorship of Clive Byrne, the agenda of NAPD has expanded enormously in recent                omissions at the earliest opportunity.
                       years and this magazine will inform you of the organisations and institutions with which the
                       Association has become allied.
                       The last quarter-century has witnessed a vast amount of change to the education system in
                                                                                                                                  PUBLISHING INFORMATION
                       Ireland. Schools are more diverse, more democratic, more inclusive and more complex than ever              Published by NAPD
                       before. The introduction of free post-primary schooling constituted a seismic shift in 1967; thirty-
                                                                                                                                  Layout & Print:
                       one years on, the Education Act set out the principles in a legal framework and from that has
                                                                                                                                  Mark Daniel
                       emanated a whole series of changes and reforms.
                                                                                                                                  CRM Design & Print,
                       These changes and reforms have impacted on all those involved in education – parents, pupils,              Unit 6, Bridgecourt Office Park,
                       teachers and, probably most of all, on school leaders.                                                     Dublin 12.
                       Principals and deputy principals carry a vast work-load that includes governance, administration
                       and management, pastoral care for the health and safety of the school community, responsibility            CONTACT INFORMATION
                       for the leadership of learning.
                                                                                                                                  11 Wentworth, Eblana Villas,
                       Until quite recently, most school leaders were promoted out of the classroom and into an office            Grand Canal Street Lower,
                       without any form of pre-training. We have to be grateful for the many men and women of talent              Dublin 2
                       and an innate capacity for leadership who came forward to administer and develop our schools.
                                                                                                                                  Tel: (01) 662 7025
                       We can be grateful, too, for the founders of NAPD who, in the late 1990s, saw a need to bring              Fax: (01) 662 7058
                       together the diffuse groups then representing school leaders, into one organisation that spoke as          www.napd.ie
                       the united voice of principals and deputy principals.                                                      Email: info@napd.ie
                       Since its inception in 1998, NAPD has developed as one of the major educational partners. While
                       it has always been most concerned about the ‘welfare’ of its members, increasingly that has
                       encompassed the concept of Continuing Professional Development (CPD). NAPD made a major
                       input into the development of Leadership Development for Schools (LDS), Misneach, Tóraiocht,
                       and is now, with the Irish Primary Principals’ Network (IPPN) and the DES, responsible for the
                       Centre for School Leadership.
                       However, the activities of the association extend much further, through the work of the National
                       Executive, the sub-committees and working groups and the nine regions. In addition NAPD is
                       represented on a wide range of education bodies and organisations, playing an active part in
                       shaping their educational roles.                                                                              Find NAPD On-Line
                       The Leader brings together, in one place, the bulk of that information.                                          [www.napd.ie],
                       Derek West, August 2015                                                                                   Facebook, Twitter and Vimeo.

                               Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals                                                NAPD Leader                        3
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                                                                                                                                                                                                              PRINCIPALS   AND   DEPUTY PRINCIPALS

                                                           Page 10

                           Page 5                                                                                                                                                Page 12 & 14                                    Page 20
                  Mary Nihill                      Clive Byrne                                                                                                                   Ger Looney                    Shay Bannon

        SECTION ONE                                 SECTION THREE                                                                                                                              SECTION FOUR
      WELCOME                                      EDUCATIONAL                                                                                                                                PARTNERS FOR
      [5] Mary Nihill, President                   PARTNERS                                                                                                                                   STUDENTS
      [6] The Importance of                        [26] Cúram                                                                                                                                 [41] CAW AND TAP
               Leadership                          [27] The Guided Way                                                                                                                        [42] Yellow Flag
       [9]     NAPD Conference                     [28] The Heads’ Survival Guide                                                                                                             [43] Young Social Innovators
      [10]     The Current Concerns                [33] The Work of the                                                                                                                       [44] BT Young Scientist
      [12]     NAPD or NUPD?                                 Teaching Council
                                                                                                                                                                                              [45] Pramerica Spirit of
      [14]     NAPD-FET                            [34]      Droichead                                                                                                                               Community

      [16]     NAPD’s International Links          [35]      Complaints about                                                                                                                 [46]   GLEN
                                                             Registered Teachers
      [17]     NAPD-Retired                                                                                                                                                                   [47]   BeLonG To
                                                   [36]      Legal Island & PPEF

                                                   [37]      NCCA
                                                                                                                                                                                               SECTION FIVE
                                                   [38]      JCT
      SUPPORT SERVICES                                                                                                                                                                        INFORMATION
                                                   [39]      SEC
      [18] The Centre for Leadership                                                                                                                                                          [48] National Executive 2014-15
      [20] Welfare Committee &                                NAPD                                                                                                                            [49] NAPD Committees 2014-15
                                                               PRINCIPALS   AND   DEPUTY PRINCIPALS

                The Very Useful Guide                                                                                                                                                         [50] NAPD Regional Committees
      [22]     Local Support & Mentoring                                                                                                                                                      [51] Reports from the Regions
      [23]     Useful Contacts for                                                                                                                                                            [54] Speakers for the Regions
                                                                                                                                                                                              [56] Abbreviations
      [24]     Leading 4 Learning [L4L]
                                                                                                                                                                                              [58] New DES Circulars
      [29]     Creative Engagement
                                                                                                                                                                                              [59] Online with NAPD
                                                                  Information Edition – 2015                                                                                                  [60] NAPD Personnel
                                                            August 2015                    A Publication of the National Association of
                                                                                                  Principals & Deputy Principals          NAPD
                                                                                                                                          PRINCIPALS   AND   DEPUTY PRINCIPALS

                                                                  This Month’s Cover

          NAPD acknowledges the support of                     The ‘I’ says it all.
                                                                                                                                                                                                The Editor warmly thanks the many
           Allianz and the Teacher Education
           Section, an Roinn Oideachais agus            This edition is all about                                                                                                               contributors who made this edition
                                                            INFORMATION!                                                                                                                                     possible.
             Scileanna, for this publication.

          4     NAPD Leader                              Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals
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      NAPD President

              opefully, as you read this issue of                                                       find your new role demanding but
              Leader, you will have enjoyed a                                                           hopefully very rewarding. I look forward to
              good break and you are feeling re-                                                        meeting you at the Misneach and Tánaiste
      energised for the year ahead.                                                                     programmes in August and at our annual
                                                                                                        conference in October.
      I would like to wish those of you retiring all
      the best for the restful years ahead. I                                                           NAPD headquarters is busy preparing for
      commend NAPD-R (NAPD Retired) as a                                                                annual conference in Galway on 15 and 16
      means of keeping in touch with other                                                              October. Record numbers have again
      retired colleagues.                                                                               registered for Conference 2015. An
                                                                                                        interesting programme of keynote speakers
      Perhaps you may be interested in joining                                                          and workshops is being finalised. More
      the very active NAPD local support service                                                        importantly for you, as principal or deputy
      which was engaged in a highly successful                                                          principal, it is an opportunity to relax and
      mentoring programme for newly-                                                                    meet old friends, make new friends and
      appointed principals and deputy principals                                                        share concerns and solutions with
      last year. If you are interested in being part                                                    colleagues in the ambiance of the beautiful
      of this service in your area please contact                                                       Radisson Hotel in the city of the Tribes
      head office for details.                                                                          overlooking Galway Bay.
      A very special hello and welcome to those                                                         You need to register with NAPD by
      of you who have been appointed to the                                                             returning the Application Form sent
      positions of principal or deputy principal                                                        recently to schools or online at
      this year. I have no doubt but that you will             Mary Nihill, NAPD President              www.napd.ie.

                                                 The Aims of NAPD
      NAPD is working to ensure that the following six major issues are addressed, so that school leadership is protected,
                                       nurtured and supported at post-primary level:

               1                         2                    3                        4                      5                        6
       To allow                  The direct impact     Principals must be      Time must be given     The challenges           Salary levels and
       Principals to be          of educational        supported in the        to whole-staff and     posed in recruiting      working
       effective leaders         legislation on the    distribution and        whole-school           and retaining            conditions must
       they must be              role of the           delegation of           collaboration,         school leaders           be made
       permitted to              Principal must be     administrative          school planning,       must be addressed        attractive if post-
       concentrate on            addressed through     tasks, through          change-                at national level        primary schools in
       their instructional       the provision of      provision of            management,                                     Ireland are to
       role                      support, advice       enhanced senior         team-building,                                  have effective
                                 and Continuing        and middle              staff-development,                              educational
                                 Professional          management              policy-development                              leadership in the
                                 Development           structures              and                                             future.
                                 [CPD]                                         implementation, in
                                                                               order to maximise
                                                                               the learning
                                                                               opportunities for

      The National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals (NAPD) was established in 1998. Principals and Deputy Principals in post-primary
      schools recognised by the DES, (Community and Comprehensive, ETB and Voluntary Secondary) form the membership of NAPD. NAPD is a
      professional association. It does not have a brief to deal with salary or conditions of employment. The Association of Secondary Teachers
      Ireland (ASTI) and The Teachers’ Union of Ireland (TUI) represent members of NAPD in these areas.

                                                                                                                        NAPD Leader          5
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      The Importance of
      Through its conferences, publications and interactions with other associations, NAPD has constantly fostered a
      dialogue about the nature of school leadership. Principals and deputies need to understand the nature of their work
      if they are to function effectively and leadership needs to be distributed throughout the school community, so that
      everyone participates in the process. The establishment of the Centre for Leadership is a culmination of the work
      of lobbying and promotion of the leadership concept which NAPD has undertaken over recent years. The
      appointment of the Association’s President, Mary Nihill, as Director of the new Centre augurs well for the future.
      The article that follows was adapted from the Handbook for Newly-Appointed Principals and Deputy Principals [2012],
      a publication that has been superseded by this magazine, but which contained some gems that are worth reprinting
      here. [Ed.]

      [i] Introduction                                                             [ii] The Successful Leader
      It is widely recognised that the Irish education system played a             This Section looks at an American publication that offers advice on
      vital part in the country’s development, competitiveness and                 the skills you need to acquire in order to be successful in the
      economic prosperity, and that, in the current recession, itis                business of leading a school. On Page 28 you can read the wisdom
      imperative that our young people acquire both the skills and the             of John Stevenson, former Headmaster of the Sullivan Upper
      attitudes to learning that will contribute to their professional             School in Holywood, Co. Down. His Head’s Survival Guide, is for
      development and personal well-being. International research                  those who want to survive in the job of school principal.
      emphasises the key role of school leaders in ensuring that schools
                                                                                   Carol Birks became Principal of Warren Harding High school in
      effectively respond to rapidly changing societal needs and provide
                                                                                   Bridgeport in July 2007 and a year later was named the
      the foundations for lifelong learning.
                                                                                   Outstanding First Year High School Principal in the State of
      The 2008 OECD Research Activity, Improving School Leadership, in             Connecticut. She is committed to ‘a path of continuous
      which Ireland participated:                                                  improvement’, which entails a partnership with teachers, students,
                                                                                   parents and the community and which she believes is ‘the driving
      l recognised that the challenges and pressures facing school
                                                                                   force’ behind the school’s successes. In an article originally written
         leaders in virtually all OECD countries are enormous;
                                                                                   for the National Association of Secondary School Principals
      l acknowledged that one of the major dilemmas of school                      [USA], she summarises these under eight headings:
         leadership is that school heads are expected to be both
         organisational managers and leaders of effective teaching and             EVALUATE THE EXISTING CULTURE
         learning;                                                                 This entails entering dialogue with the students, the teachers, the
                                                                                   parents and members of the wider community. It’s about involving
      l accepted that the range of knowledge and skills, required
                                                                                   the stakeholders in the school improvement discussion, so that
         today by school principals and deputies, in order to be
                                                                                   you gain perspectives from every angle. It’s about listening and
         effective leaders, is daunting;
                                                                                   finding out what is working, and what is not, in the school. Carol
      l acknowledged that the cumulative demands on school leaders,                employed one-to-one interviews and set up focus groups. She
         with the resulting fragmentation and incoherence, can                     made a point of meeting all members of the staff [in her case
         undermine the capacity of schools to meet society’s                       almost 120 people]. She asked them, How do your students learn?
         expectations of them.                                                     Why do you think students are not achieving at high levels? What
                                                                                   would you do first if you were Principal? The next stage is to ‘use
      NAPD was assured by the former Minister for Education and
                                                                                   the responses’ in determining future actions – identifying the
      Science, Mary Hanafin, that the primary role of the Principal is to
                                                                                   things that work, the interventions that are needed; setting goals
      be a leader of education:
                                                                                   and priorities; establishing on-going evaluation.
      “It is not our intention that you should be administrators. It is the
      intention that you will be leaders of education in your school. I am going   LOOK AT THE DATA
      to work with you over the next year to ensure that we can reduce the         Carol Birks rejects the advice, often given to new Principals, ‘not
      burden, to review ways in which we can reduce the bureaucracy, while         to change anything in the first year.’ She is all on for ‘creating
      meeting our obligations, just to make sure that you can get on to do the     momentum’.This should arise from a close and critical study of the
      job that you are employed to do.” (NAPD Conference 2004)                     data that is available in the school, covering academic attainment,
                                                                                   discipline issues, attendance, school history, students’ reports,WSE
        NAPD lobbies the DES on your behalf to ease the                            and subject reports from the DES. This forms the basis for the
        bureaucratic burden of school leaders. NAPD                                action plan, the assessment of teacher CPD [Continuing
        considers it vital that the DES recognise the                              Professional Development] needs, the contact with parent groups,
        complexity of the work of Principals and Deputy                            the publication of a bulletin ‘with student expectations and
        Principals and acknowledges their vital role as school                     successes’. Carol also places value on the idea of giving the school
        leaders.                                                                   a physical makeover with a volunteer labour force from among the
                                                                                   stakeholders – ‘Although these changes are mainly cosmetic, the

           6     NAPD Leader                                     Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals
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      project made the volunteers anticipate future developments and           [iii] The Key Factors
      the students enjoyed seeing the transformation!’
                                                                               Following meetings between NAPD – IPPN – LDS, a number of
      USE THE DATA                                                             position papers were exchanged. Some of the common threads
      The data indicates current effectiveness and what needs to be done.      which emerged as a result of the interaction are:
      In an ideal situation, the following preparations will be complete:
                                                                               EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE THAT THE ROLE OF PRINCIPAL IS
      Staffing, timetable, information for parents, building maintenance,
                                                                               PIVOTAL FOR SCHOOL-WIDE SUCCESS:
      school publications [handbooks, school calendar for the year]
                                                                               l OECD report: Improving School Leadership (2008);
      registration and induction programmes, special needs supports.
                                                                               l Professor Michael Fullan: Quality Leadership for Quality Learning
      KNOW WHAT YOU STAND FOR                                                    (Paper for IPPN, 2006);
      Carol Birks places great importance on the Principal’s capacity to       l Professor Kenneth Leithwood: How Leadership Influences
      lead and to be the figurehead who is identified with the vision for        Student Learning (2004);
      the school and its students. The Principal is the guardian of that
      vision. ‘I tried to envision what the school should look like 6          [You can access more detail on these items via Google].
      months, 12 months, and 5 years after I became Principal. Ask your
      leadership team how the school would feel at each of these               RECRUITMENT
      benchmarks. A successful school must develop a strategy of action        l Getting the right person to lead the school is critical;
      that revolves around establishing a core curriculum, cultivating         l The recruitment process for Principals requires complete re-
      relationships, building capacity, and engaging students.’ She sees a       design, with emphasis on the personal suitability, professional
      major challenge for the Principal is to get the relationship with the      skills and competence required for the role;
      staff just right. It’s a matter of resolving ‘the innate conflict that
      exists between the necessity to lead and evaluate teachers and to        l Those charged with appointing Principals require appropriate
      be of genuine help to those same teachers.’ It’s a matter of               training.
      meeting challenges from staff as an opportunity to listen to people
      and to identify their concerns.                                          TRUST & AUTONOMY
                                                                               l The effectiveness of a school leader is highly dependent on
      DON’T GO IT ALONE                                                          the level of trust and autonomy given to the role;
      It is all too easy for the Principal to be an isolated figure. Birks
                                                                               l Principals are being held increasingly accountable for learning
      counsels new appointees to make allies, to find the critical mass of
                                                                                 outcomes – such accountability requires reciprocal managerial
      support. This involves candour, a sharing of the vision, and an
      acknowledgement that the Principal cannot move the school
      forward alone. ‘I acknowledged that I needed help from staff
      members, parents and community members alike.’                           VALUE FOR MONEY
                                                                               l If the goal is to improve student learning, investing in school
      SUPPORT PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT                                           leadership offers the best value for money, compared with any
      While CPD is under threat in the Irish education system, with the          other form of resource-intervention.
      current level of retrenchment, it is worth holding on to Carol
      Birks’s assertion of the importance of maintaining it: ‘Change is        ROLE ATTRACTIVENESS
      only sustained by building capacity through high-quality, focused,       In recent years, teachers have been avoiding school leadership as
      and ongoing professional development’. Apart from facilitating           a career-advancement option;
      teachers to take part in programmes organised for areas of the           l The role of Principal is legislatively and administratively so
      curriculum and leadership roles, there are numerous                         over-loaded that it is perceived to be both professionally and
      opportunities to make informal contacts with schools that have              personally ‘undoable’;
      something special to offer. Her final word on this: ‘Ensure that your
      professional development is focused on school and staff member           l The current Principal’s Contract is inadequate and must be
      needs, involves teachers in their own training, provides an                replaced to include a detailed job description, reflecting
      opportunity for feedback, and is worth their time and effort.’             current legislation and consequent accountabilities;
                                                                               l These fundamental barriers must be addressed if we want
      TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF                                                      excellent teachers to compete for school leadership roles.
      Since its foundation, NAPD has been acutely aware of the heavy
      work-load of principals and deputies. It is all too easy for new
                                                                               NEWLY-APPOINTED PRINCIPALS
      appointees to burn the midnight oil 24/7 [week-ends included] to
                                                                               l In order to have an effective change of leadership in schools,
      ensure that all the work is being done. Apart from the demands
                                                                                 an internship period of 3-months is required;
      during the school day and on many week-day evenings, there is the
      inevitable mountain of paperwork to be addressed. It is not going        l Enhanced mentoring and induction programmes are needed
      to go away, but Birks asserts that, as a school leader, you should         to ensure a smooth transition.
      ‘take time to renew yourself: take a class, go to the gym, meditate,
      pray, or simply spend time with loved ones… Renewing yourself            CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT (CPD)
      and your spirit can go a long way toward helping one get through         If the Principal is to be a genuine ‘leader of learning’ that Principal’s
      those late nights and weekends.‘                                         own learning career must be continuous and developmental;
                                                                               l Formal CPD opportunities are essential to aspiring, newly-
      ENJOY THE WORK!                                                              appointed and experienced Principals;
      To be in this job – and not to enjoy it – is to do far more harm
      than good. It will always be hard work, but it is both important and     l Such programmes should be based on action-research to
                                                                                 accommodate the busy role of Principal;
      rewarding, as Birks implies, in her concluding lines: ‘Stay current on
      best practices in school reform. Build the capacity of your staff.       l CPD modules should be fully-accredited and accessible flexibly
      Always do what is right for kids’.                                         throughout the Principal’s career.

             Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals                                           NAPD Leader           7
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      PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL                                                   [iv] The Future
      l Principalship would benefit from a meaningful, structured
        appraisal/feedback process;                                           The future of Irish education depends upon the attraction of
                                                                              talented and motivated individuals such as you to work as
      l Performance-appraisal is not only an essential professional
                                                                              principals and deputy principals. NAPD wishes to attract teaching
         development exercise which benefits the whole school, it is
                                                                              colleagues into positions of leadership by ensuring a higher degree
         also protects the Principal’s own accountability;
                                                                              of job satisfaction than present circumstances permit and by being
      l It is essential that those carrying out the appraisal process are     able to focus on the key, creative aspects of leadership. The
         appropriately skilled and qualified. In addition, they must have     positive aspects of this work entail direct contact with staff,
         relevant and adequate experience as school leaders.                  students and parents; facing challenges, managing the planning
                                                                              process and effecting change; facilitating the teaching and learning
      PRINCIPALS AS LEADERS OF LEARNING                                       process; improving the school environment and facilities; looking
      l In order to enable Principals undertake essential functions,          to the pastoral care and holistic development of each individual in
        such as instructional leadership and coaching, appropriate            the school community; in short, becoming fully the leader of
        administrative supports must be put in place;                         learning. Central to the conservation of the quality of Irish
      l Most Principals admit that their current administrative               education are three linked facets of school leadership:
         workload severely limits their capacity to have any meaningful
         role in influencing student learning.
      GOVERNANCE                                                                                   RETENTION
      l While many Boards of Management are effective, there is a                                REMUNERATION
        growing belief that Boards are finding it increasingly difficult to
        fulfill their functions as envisaged in the recently-enacted          Recruitment
        Education, Welfare, Equality and Labour legislation.                  While the OECD Report, Teachers Matter: Attracting, Developing
                                                                              and Retaining Teachers (2005), acknowledges Ireland’s good
      PROFESSIONAL SUPPORTS & SERVICES                                        fortune in attracting high-calibre graduates to the teaching
      l Professional Bodies play an important role for school leaders         profession, at post-primary level there is a decreasing number of
        and are best positioned to deliver certain supports and               applicants for the post of principal. There are also concerns at
        services;                                                             international level about the shortage of applicants for school
      l Principalship is a high ‘wear and tear’ position, some of which       leadership positions. There are no national statistics for the
         is due to the isolated nature of the role. Consequently, the         number of applicants for each vacancy, but evidence from
         role requires specialised support structures to address              members of NAPD indicates that a number of factors may deter
         personal as well as professional difficulties;                       applications for the post of Principal:
      l Informal leadership recovery and coaching programmes are              l lack of contractual definition of job at national level
         essential supports.
                                                                              l increasing legislative requirements and responsibilities
      IN-SCHOOL MANAGEMENT (ISM)                                              l poor infrastructure at school level
      l Distributing leadership throughout the school is an essential         l increasing demands on personal time
        practice but is severely inhibited by current rigid ISM               l events and meetings after school hours
                                                                              l inadequate remuneration
      l In-School Management in its current form is more focused on
                                                                              l lack of opportunities for paid sabbatical leave/further study
         the promotional entitlement of teachers than the meaningful
         distribution of management responsibility and workload;              l geographic location of schools (inner city/isolated rural)
      l Schools need In-School Management structures which are                l complexity of management of post-primary school
         flexible and capable of responding to the ever-changing needs        l lack of training for aspiring Principals/Deputy Principal
         of the school.                                                       l complexity of human resource management

      STEP UP & STEP DOWN                                                     Retention
      l The concept of ‘Principal for Life’ is no longer appropriate for      Internationally, there are high attrition rates for those appointed
        the good of the individual or for the needs of the school;
                                                                              to the position of Principal. In recent years, there were over 400
      l Flexible career structures are required which attract and             new appointments of principals and deputies – and an indication
         enable teachers to ‘opt in’ or ‘step up’ to a leadership role for    of the flight from the profession, arising with even greater
         a contracted period of time such as 5 to 7 years;                    frequency as a result of the recession, and the Croke Park
      l ‘Stepping down’ should facilitate salary/pension recognition of       Agreement which led to high numbers of retirements from the
         the period of time spent as Principal as a proportion of             Public Service on 29.02.2012. NAPD has been an active partner
         overall teaching career. Length of service as Principal of the       with LDS [Leadership Development for Schools] in ensuring that
         school should be included in determining ‘seniority’.                those who aspire to positions in school leadership receive
                                                                              adequate preparation. The CPD provided through the NAPD
                                                                              Regions has opened up new levels of in-service.
        NAPD, working on your behalf, will endeavour to
        progress this leadership agenda in meetings with the
        Department of Education and the Education
                                                                              NAPD recognises that it is the function of the teacher unions,
        Partners. NAPD is conscious of resource implications
                                                                              ASTI and TUI, to pursue issues of pay and conditions of work, but
        but many ideas listed above could easily be advanced
                                                                              maintains that it is essential that the remuneration of school
        in a cost-neutral manner.
                                                                              leaders is commensurate with the responsibilities involved.

          8     NAPD Leader                                   Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals
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            Galway: 15 & 16 October 2015


                                                 SPEAKERS WILL INLCUDE

                                      Jan                                                Toby Salt –
                                      O’Sullivan,                                        CEO Ormiston Academies Trust
                                      Minister for                                       and previously Executive Director
                                      Education and                                      at the [UK] National College for
                                      Skills                                             School Leadership

            l Registerwith NAPD by downloading the application form from
               www.napd.ie and return it to Catherine Shiels at Head Office
            l Book your hotel room at the Radisson Blu, Galway on
            l BOOK        EARLY!

                RETURN YOUR REGISTRATION FORMS                                RETURN YOUR ACCOMMODATION FORM
                     TO NAPD HEAD OFFICE                                            TO THE RADISSON HOTEL

             Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals                           NAPD Leader   9
Leader NAPD - National Association of Principals and ...
The Leader August 2015 Issue 1_Exec Report No.7 March 2008.qxd 23/07/2015 09:45 Page 10

      Clive Byrne, NAPD Director
                                                                                 principals will be reluctant to approach their boards for the €1,000
                                                                                 cost of this programme. It’s a l’Oreal Moment because we are worth
                                                                                 it! I was taken by a quote from a colleague principal who participated
                                                                                 in the programme “Headspace is an opportunity to step off the
                                                                                 treadmill and to reflect and challenge like-minded colleagues. It gave
                                                                                 me the energy and vigour to step back on”. I hope a number of these
                                                                                 programmes for between 12-15 participants will be organised
                                                                                 regionally within the next school year.

                                                                                 NAPD AND THE REGISTER OF LOBBYISTS
                                                                                 As a professional association seeking to represent the interests of
                                                                                 principals and deputy principals in the Republic of Ireland, NAPD is
                                                                                 now covered by the Regulation of Lobbying Act. The Act is designed to
                                                                                 provide information to the public about who is lobbying, on whose
                                                                                 behalf the lobbying is being carried out, what are the issues involved in
                                                                                 the lobbying, what is the intended result of the lobbying and who is
                                                                                 being lobbied. NAPD has registered and from 1 September meetings
                                                        Clive Byrne              with elected officials, Ministers and Ministers of State, TDs and
                                                        pictured at the          Senators, MEPs for constituencies within the state, members of local
                                                        FET Conference           authorities, special advisors to Ministers and Ministers of State, and
                                                        last April.              certain public and civil servants above a particular rank must be logged
                                                                                 periodically during the year. All in the interests of transparency – I
                                                                                 suspect the entire process will quickly become the norm and rest
                                                                                 assured the Association will continue to represent the interests of
                                                                                 members in all relevant quarters and will all relevant individuals. The
      THE CUISLE INITIATIVE                                                      Register of Lobbyists and of meetings will be accessible to the public.
      The Presidents and National Executive are constantly striving to           The Standards in Public Offices Commission will be the regulator of
      improve service to members at regional level. A subcommittee was           lobbying.
      established and the CUISLE initiative will be rolled out from
      September to bring the regions, individual members and schools closer      TRANSITION FROM SECOND
      together. The model used by Region 6 in engaging with members is at
      the heart of this initiative. A planning meeting, attended by three
                                                                                 TO THIRD LEVEL
      representatives from each region, took place in Portlaoise on 14           It is really important that the proposed junior cycle reforms are
      August and the sharing of ideas and best practice will act as a guide in   implemented and embedded as quickly as possible if the revised
      compiling a plan to reinvigorate members to improve attendance at          proposals are accepted by teachers in the autumn. Until the people of
      regional meetings or to design a programme which meets the local           Ireland can see that there are more ways to assess a student than by a
      needs of members.                                                          single terminal examination, it will be impossible to make the
                                                                                 necessary changes to our Leaving Certificate curriculum to create a
                                                                                 second-level system that will be fit for purpose and more responsive to
      CARECALL HEADSPACE PROPOSAL                                                our needs as a society.
      The Association is exploring a collaboration with Carecall to develop
                                                                                 A working group, chaired by the Secretary-General of the DES, Seán Ó
      Headspace, a confidential personal and professional development
                                                                                 Foghlú, and involving all the key stakeholders published Supporting a
      programme for school leaders. A number of meetings have already
                                                                                 better transition from second level to higher education in April this year. It
      taken place and a presentation was made to the National Executive.
                                                                                 has the potential to be revolutionary. The report sets out clearly the
      The rationale behind the initiative is that school leaders need the time
                                                                                 context for reform and concludes that the so-called Points Race results
      and space to sustain their own resilience, as well as their personal and
                                                                                 from a complex interaction of factors which are compounded by the
      professional effectiveness, so that they can meet the constant
                                                                                 use of the Leaving Certificate results for selection to higher education.
      demands of their job. Headspace will offer a safe and confidential
                                                                                 The interactions involve the nature of the preparation for, and
      environment where school leaders can explore the most effective
                                                                                 assessment of, the Leaving Certificate, the manner in which grades are
      leadership behaviours and learn from each other, using action learning
                                                                                 awarded and converted into points to rank students for admission to
      and problem-solving techniques. It will run over a period of between
                                                                                 higher education, the proliferation of entry routes into higher
      six and twelve months and is customised to meet the needs of school
                                                                                 education and the high demand for a small number of university
      leaders within their specific local context. The programme will consist
                                                                                 courses with a limited number of places.
      of a whole-day introductory session followed by five half-day sessions.
      This seems like a ‘no-brainer’ because if school leaders were operating    We need to encourage and reward critical, reflective and independent
      in industry they would be expected to participate in such a programme      thinking and the current system doesn’t appear to do this. The report
      every so often. School leaders will routinely seek resources to enable     considers problematic predictability in the Leaving Certificate
      staff to participate in CPD programmes but my hunch is that many           examination. A study, commissioned by the State Examinations

          10     NAPD Leader                                    Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals
The Leader August 2015 Issue 1_Exec Report No.7 March 2008.qxd 23/07/2015 09:47 Page 11

      Commission, asks what aspects of predictability are helpful and what        becoming functioning members of society. One should never be afraid
      aspects engender undesirable approaches to learning.                        of information so dedicating time to informing our students about life
                                                                                  skills and true life situations as part of a vibrant SPHE programme in
      The report also proposes a new grading scale for the Leaving
                                                                                  our schools will be time well spent.
      Certificate – for instance in Ireland there are 28 grade-bands across
      ordinary and higher level papers. In Scotland there are five and in
      Finland seven. If the number of grade-points is reduced, this will          NCCA
      necessitate the introduction of a revised common points scale.              The National Council for Curriculum and Assessment [NCCA] is a
      The University sector has agreed to move to a broader undergraduate         statutory body established under the Education Act and advises the
      entry systems, in science or engineering for example, to enable a           Minister on curriculum and assessment matters in the areas of early
      broader experience for students with specialisation to follow later in      childhood, primary and post-primary education. The term of the new
      the degree.                                                                 Council will end on the 31 December 2018. NAPD isn’t a nominating
                                                                                  body to the Council but Director, Clive Byrne, was a nominee of the
      It’s wonderful to think that the moves to reform are upon us. Students      Minister on the last Council and he has been reappointed as a member
      entering Fifth Year in 2015 and sitting Leaving Certificate in 2017 will    of the new Council.
      benefit from any moves to eliminate the backwash effect of the
      “teaching to the test” Leaving Certificate most of us have experienced.
                                                                                  ARTS IN EDUCATION PORTAL
      SEX EDUCATION:                                                              Many of you will be familiar with the Creative Engagement project which
                                                                                  is a collaboration between the Department of Education, the
                                                                                  Department of the Arts and NAPD. Over the last number of years,
      Educating teenagers on the subject of sex, sexuality and relationships      Creative Engagement has given almost €500,000 to over 250 schools
      can be an awkward task but it is undoubtedly one of the biggest             that have participated in the scheme. The Arts in Education Portal was
      challenges for education. Its implications are far-reaching in terms of     one of the objectives of the Arts-in-Education Charter signed by
      the emotional, physical, psychological and mental development of a          Ministers Quinn and Deenihan in December 2012. NAPD regards the
      young person. It is a complicated subject, yes, but one that all our        Creative Engagement initiative as the living embodiment of how the Arts
      children will inevitably encounter as they mature into adulthood.           in Education Portal should be delivered. Arts Officer, Dermot Carney,
      Whilst some may argue that the subject should be taught exclusively at      has been closely involved in designing and developing the new Portal
      home, the reality is that, despite some parents having no difficulty in     which was launched in May 2015. The Portal seeks to build support
      explaining ‘the facts of life’ to their children, many feel uncomfortable   and develop a community of practice within arts and education.
      in discussing the subject. Schools feel obliged to provide students with    Further details can be found on www.artsineducation.ie .
      relevant information on sex and relationships, although precise
      motivations differ, whether it’s due the school’s ethos or pressure
      from parents, or both.
                                                                                  COLLABORATION WITH OUR
                                                                                  PRIMARY COLLEAGUES
      The 2014 announcement from the Department of Education of the               NAPD and the Irish Primary Principals Network (IPPN) collaborated
      inclusion of a new short course on sex education as part Social             most successfully in developing the Centre for School Leadership in
      Personal and Health Education (SPHE) is a welcome development and           conjunction with the Teacher Education Section of the Department of
      must be supported by schools. This initiative will be delivered as part     Education and Skills. In the light of this, both associations have
      of Junior Cycle reforms which will also see an increase the time            embarked on a series of meetings to explore other possible areas of
      allocation for SPHE as a short course of 100 hours at Junior Cycle.         mutual interest. Issues of governance, the benefits of Charitable status,
      The Department of Education published a Life Skills Survey which            services to members, representation of members in various fora,
      included data on the teaching of Relationships and Sex Education            publications and web presence, links to the Teaching Council and
      (RSE) in post-primary schools. The report stated that some 98% of           other agencies, second-level use of Text-A-Parent and education posts
      respondent schools have a documented policy on RSE in place or are in       were among the topics covered at the first meeting between officers
      the process of developing one. However, the report noted that this          of the associations which took place in Castle Durrow towards the end
      figure conflicts with data from the Department’s inspectorate report        of June. Members will be advised of the progress of these meetings
      on RSE which indicated that only 56% of post primary schools                designed to better serve the interests of primary and post-primary
      evaluated had an RSE policy in place.                                       school leaders.

      In the sexualised world in which we live many teenagers will engage in
      sexual activity. According to a report by the Department of Children,       LOCAL SUPPORT NETWORK
      one in four teenagers aged 15 to 17 has done so, whether it be              & MENTORING REPORT
      motivated by peer pressure, a more sexually liberal society or the          The Local Support Service (LSS) is a service offered to members. An
      disturbing trend of over-sexualisation of teenagers in the media.           experienced recently-retired principal or deputy principal is available
      The responsible thing for post primary schools to do is ensure that         to provide a listening ear for serving colleagues as a help and support
      students are provided with adequate information. Ignorance around           in addressing issues of concern. It is a personal support, completely
      the facts of life is never acceptable. However I must stress that each      confidential. This year members of the LSS cooperated with a serving
      school is entitled to teach course content in line with the ethos of the    principal and deputy principal to deliver a mentoring service to over
      school.                                                                     100 newly-appointed colleagues. It is a model which meets members’
                                                                                  needs and also is within our capacity to deliver. I expect there will be
      The more comfortable young adults are in talking about sex, the better      close cooperation between the Centre for School Leadership and the
      it is for wider society. A 2012 HSE Health Protection Surveillance          Professional Development Support Service for Teachers to provide an
      Centre report found that there were 13,259 notifications of Sexually        effective mentoring programme for newly appointed colleagues but
      Transmitted Infections [STIs] in 2011, an increase of just over 12% on      be aware of the Local Support Service – a personal support for you.
      the previous year. On the other hand however Central Statistics Office      The LSS will have a stand at the Annual NAPD Conference [Galway,
      [CSO] figures indicate that teen pregnancies are at their lowest level      October 15 & 16], and there will also be an opportunity to meet your
      for 50 years.                                                               local representative.
      Our education system is, quite rightly, designed to provide its students
      with as much quality information in order to better equip them in

             Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals                                              NAPD Leader          11
The Leader August 2015 Issue 1_Exec Report No.7 March 2008.qxd 23/07/2015 09:47 Page 12

           NAPD or NUPD??
                                                              Ger Looney
      From the foundation of NAPD, in the closing years of the last century, the issue of the precise identity of the
      Association has been a regular topic of debate. And the question that has arisen again and again, particularly when
      the cuts to salaries, promotions and resources have been felt acutely and when there seems to have been a
      corresponding increase in the work-load and responsibilities of school leaders, is why principals and deputy principals
      are not members of a union, perhaps to be named NUPD, instead of NAPD? Some members have voiced the concern
      that, as members of a minority within the existing teacher unions, whose interests seem to be swamped by those of
      the vocal majority, they are not being well served by the existing Industrial Relations [IR] structures.
      When Ger Looney was President of NAPD, in 2001-02, he carefully researched the ‘union issue’ and came to the
      conclusion that it was not viable. A brief debate on these pages, in September 2013, reopened the topic and reached
      a similar verdict.
      But there is a new cohort of school leaders and the question lingers for them, like the proverbial elephant in the room.
      Here, Ger Looney returns to give his 2015 thoughts on the status and purpose of NAPD.

             he Financial Emergency Measures         While some retirees continue to                 “NAPD was inaugurated in
             in the Public Interest (FEMPI) Act      contribute to the work of NAPD                  1998, as the professional
             2009, together with the                 Committees and specific projects, it is         association for second level
      imposition of swingeing public service         new appointees who will henceforth              school leaders in Ireland, with
      salary cuts, over last five years in           drive the Regional Committees and the           the support of Education
      particular, has seen hundreds of               National Executive.                             Minister Micheál Martin”
      principals and deputy principals retire at
      an earlier point in their career than they     It is timely, therefore, to remind            Against     this   background,       and
      would probably otherwise have                  ourselves of what the Association is all      spearheaded by a small group of school
      considered. By definition the most             about, and in that context also to revisit    leaders who pulled these associations
      immediate effect has seen an equal             what has been one of the recurring            together and negotiated with the
      number of new appointees to schools            themes down through the years,                Department, NAPD was inaugurated in
      the length and breadth of the country. In      particularly in times of difficulty (and      1998, as the professional association for
      reality we have witnessed what might           there have been many!), i.e., the             second level school leaders in Ireland,
      almost be described as an ‘inter-              question of whether the Association           with the support of Education Minister
      generational management change’, with          would best serve members by operating         Micheál Martin.
      the baton being handed over to an              as a union, NUPD.
                                                                                                   Since then and through its Officers,
      entirely new group of people.                  Believe it or not, there was a time when      National Executive and Regional
      There are many issues that arise as a          we had nobody to represent our                Network, the Association has provided
      consequence, not least of which is the         concerns. As a vice-principaI back in the     the only united voice for principals and
      fact that we are relative newcomers to         1990s I remember it well. True there          deputy principals on issues of common
      the concept of leadership training and         were six associations operating across        concern across all three second-level
      just ‘gearing up’ with the Centre for          the three sectors, variously trying to look   sectors. It has built a strong platform
      School Leadership. Whatever issues do          after the interests of principals and vice-   with a range of sub-committees working
      come to light – I am content to leave for      principals, but two of these associations     on specific areas of education and
      others to explore.                             (sub-groups of TUI and ASTI) precluded        driving national debate through its
                                                     membership of vice-principals! Changes        national     symposia     and    annual
                                                     in this regard came about as a result of      conferences for post-primary and
        “We have witnessed… the                      NAPD representations soon after the           further education.
        baton being handed over to                   Association was set up.
        an entirely new group of                                                                   NAPD is now a major partner in Irish
        people”                                      In reality, as long as the post-primary       education, enjoying a genuinely
                                                     sectors were served by small, separate        constructive relationship with the DES
      In the context of this article, my             and sectional organisations there was         and SOLAS as well as consultative status
      particular concern is that the entire          little hope of them making real headway,      with the NCCA, representation on a
      complement of principals and deputies,         particularly in their dealings with the       wide range of educational, social and
      who would have been part of NAPD               Department of Education. Indeed the           cultural organisations and contacts with
      during its formative years, have now           consultative obligations of the               educationalists across the globe, as well
      retired. Most of the other recent retirees     Department were particularly time-            as currently holding the presidency of
      would also have been members of the            consuming, given the number of groups         the European Secondary Heads
      Association.                                   with which it had to deal.                    Association (ESHA).

          12    NAPD Leader                              Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals
The Leader August 2015 Issue 1_Exec Report No.7 March 2008.qxd 23/07/2015 09:47 Page 13

      NAPD is a professional association             principals / deputies. This then defines        opinion that we should not be looking to
      committed to the development of                the way they deal with us. Despite all of       NAPD to become NUPD. One of the
      school leadership that is based upon           the change we acknowledge and record;           first things we would have to do would
      philosophical and moral principles as          despite the huge change in the nature, of       be to apply for a licence to represent and
      well as professional skills. As an             our work, the unions have not moved on          negotiate on behalf of members as well
      association, it is founded on common           this definition.                                as to join the C & A Scheme. TUI and
      purpose, with aims which were set out as                                                       ASTI have a veto at C & A, which took
                                                     I agree that it is extremely difficult for us
      follows;                                                                                       years for ACCS to overcome and gain
                                                     to be represented by the same trade
                                                                                                     membership. I wouldn’t fancy our
      l To provide a united voice for the            union as teachers. However if you look
                                                                                                     chances there.
         organisations of Principals and             at other sectors, grades of workers, right
         Deputy Principals on issues of              up to management level within the same          There are other implications of
         common concern;                             organisations, are represented by single        becoming a union which need careful
                                                     unions. We don’t have to look very far,         consideration. The annual subscription
      l To ensure that Principals and Deputy
                                                     as Impact and SIPTU, for example,               could not be payable through the school
         Principals are treated as one of the
                                                     represent different grades in our sector;       budget, the NAPD Director’s salary
         “Education Partners” and are
                                                     SNAs, school caretakers, secretaries and        could probably not be recouped through
         represented a of right on all relevant
                                                     even the Chief Executives of the ETBs .         the DES, as it is now, and all of the other
         local and national bodies both
                                                                                                     supports from the Teacher Education
         statutory and non-statutory;
                                                       “As an association, NAPD                      section of DES to the association would
      l To ensure that Principals and                                                                not be forthcoming
                                                       has no industrial relations
         Deputy-Principals are consulted on
                                                       remit and is not part of the                  Unions          primarily      focus      on
         all relevant matters and in particular
                                                       Conciliation and Arbitration                  representation         and       protection,
         on new initiatives which impinge on
                                                       (C&A) process”                                particularly in relation to the terms of
         their role;
                                                                                                     employment and working conditions of
      l To represent the views of Principals         Under Trade Union Law, principals and           members. That is exactly what we expect
         and Deputy Principals to all                deputies are entitled to particular             them to do and they generally do a good
         interested groups and relevant              representation within the teacher               job. It’s just that they don’t really do that
         bodies;                                     unions, bearing in mind their particular        job for us. Again, that’s the bit that we
                                                     contractual obligations. This includes          need to focus on.
      l To provide support/advice for                access to a designated officer, the right
         Principals and Deputy Principals            to raise issues and claims specific to          NAPD on the other hand is an
         through a secretariat.                      themselves, the right to vote on such           association of leaders. As a consequence
                                                     issues and the right to be treated as a         ‘forward thinking’ and ‘change’ are part
      As an association, NAPD has no                                                                 of its DNA. Its raison d’etre is to envision
      industrial relations remit and is not part     separate vocational group. How is this
                                                     any different to what we see Impact and         and promote national debate. We
      of the Conciliation and Arbitration                                                            should all be very proud of this and I
      (C&A) process. It is not in a position to      SIPTU managing to do?
                                                                                                     would not have it change.
      negotiate on pay and conditions. It is
                                                     Believe it or not, relationships between        What to do then? For me, I would keep
      usually in this context and at times of
                                                     NAPD and the teacher unions have                the debate open. Why not present a
      dispute be it local or national, that the
                                                     improved significantly over the years.          report to conference annually on our
      issue of union status for the association
                                                     There was actually a time when unions           dealings with the unions on specific
      takes centre stage.
                                                     would not meet us, but those days have          issues? In parallel NAPD should also
      Our problem quite simply is that in most       long since gone. We have to                     continue to update detail on the job of
      disputes it is the principal and deputy        acknowledge huge progress in reaching           principal and deputy. It will show clearly
      who are isolated, with nowhere to turn         the point where the Association is held         that we are managers and work at a
      except to NAPD and hence the debate            in very high regard by the unions and           different grade.
      around what exactly the association can        rightfully recognised as a partner in
      / can’t or should / shouldn’t do.              education.                                      If TUI and ASTI cannot differentiate in
                                                                                                     representing our particular needs, we
      However, the NAPD/NUPD debate is               However, we must continue to call them          could then be in a position to look for
      not straightforward. The issues are            to account in the way that they                 another union, one which already
      complex, but there is a logic to them that     represent principals and deputies. There        possesses a licence to represent
      cannot be ignored. The rules around            is a process for doing this, governed by        management grades within the DES.
      union representation and negotiation           procedures and regulations set out by
      rights / licences are underpinned in law       ICTU. If we can show through this               There is no panacea however. The job
      and also governed by ICTU. We are              process that we are not properly or fairly      will always be very difficult and hugely
      subject to the rules and whatever way          represented and continue to fail in our         complex. The reality is that there are
      people might like to look at it – that is      endeavours with the unions, then we             very few out there who understand the
      quite simply that!                             could look to seek representation               nature of our work, who will listen to us
                                                     elsewhere.                                      and represent us wherever possible.
      The core of our problem is that the                                                            NAPD does.
      teacher unions continue to regard us as        In looking elsewhere however, and
      primus inter pares, or first among equals,     having been part of the debate in the
      i.e. teachers who just happen to be            early years, I am absolutely of the

             Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals                                      NAPD Leader         13
The Leader August 2015 Issue 1_Exec Report No.7 March 2008.qxd 23/07/2015 09:47 Page 14

                                                                        Further Education and Training
                                                                                 (FET) Sector

                                                                      2015 -
                                                                  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
                                                Ger Looney joins the birthday celebrations with an
                                                account of one of the most vibrant sections of
                                                second-level education

             his year Post Leaving Cert. (PLC)           This FET sector will streamline the delivery      GROWING UP –
      T      provision in our schools and colleges
             quietly celebrates 30 years in
      existence, having begun life in 1985 as the
                                                        of services in further education, training, area
                                                        partnership, welfare, youth, school, juvenile
                                                        liaison, justice, community and voluntary as
                                                                                                           FROM THE GROUND UP
                                                                                                           Further Education (PLC) provision grew
                                                                                                           largely through the second-level school
      Vocational Preparation and Training (VPT)         well as the services support sector (Phew!).       system primarily (though not exclusively)
      Programme. It’s that ‘bit’ of Further Education                                                      delivered by vocational schools and colleges
      provision with which we in NAPD primarily                                                            and through the 33 VECs. A number of
      (though not exclusively) concern ourselves.                                                          Community Schools, as well as Voluntary
      As things currently stand, with a through-put                                                        Secondary Schools, also deliver FE
      of almost 38,000 students annually (more                                                             programmes.
      than 800,000 over the 30 years!), this                                                               The system was developed ‘from the ground
      provision is the largest of the full-time                                                            up’ by teachers who designed programmes to
      programmes on the Further Education (FE)                                                             be delivered at a local level and certified
      landscape. It’s staggering to contemplate what                                                       largely by City & Guilds, until the National
      we have built in that time, with more than 200                                                       Council for Vocational Awards (NCVA) was
      schools and colleges currently offering in                                                           set up and in time subsequently replaced by
      excess of 1,000 courses in over 60 disciplines,                                                      the Further Education and Training Awards
      with 92% provided in the ETB sector!                                                                 Council (FETAC), and most recently QQI.
                                                                                                           The European Social Fund (ESF) had
      THINGS THAT ARE                                                                                      provided funding for the establishment of pre-
      ACTUALLY HAPPENING!                                                                                  employment courses in over 120 schools in
      People could be forgiven for thinking that         Ger Looney was a founder-member of                1977. These courses were targeted at
      Junior Cycle Reform was the only show in            NAPD and served as the Association’s             post-Junior-Cert students and originally
      town in recent years, but there have been             third President [2002-03]. He was              confined to vocational and community /
      other changes (these ones are actually               Principal of St. John’s College, Cork,          comprehensive schools. In 1984 they were re-
      happening!) that will have a significant impact    which has had a long and proud history            developed as Vocational Preparation and
      on schools and colleges in the post-primary          as a College of Further Education.              Training VPT1 courses and were extended to
      sector delivering PLC courses (or FE Courses                                                         secondary schools. VPT2 came along in 1985
      as we are now increasingly calling them).         To govern all of this - SOLAS has been set up
                                                                                                           and this is what would become commonly
                                                        as the new Further Education and Training
      The wider FE landscape has up to recently                                                            known as Post Leaving Cert (PLC) provision.
                                                        Authority, with FETAC, HETAC and NQAI
      included PLC, Community Education, Second-        being replaced by a new body, Qualifications       Subsequent to this, the Vocational Training
      Chance Education (Youthreach, VTOS &              and Quality Assurance Ireland (QQI).               Opportunities Scheme (VTOS) came on
      Prison Education), adult literacy and basic                                                          stream, which allowed people who were long
      education, as well as self-funded adult evening   In addition the 33 VECs have been replaced
                                                                                                           unemployed to access PLC programmes and
      programmes in second-level schools. It now        by 16 Local Education and Training Boards
                                                                                                           the numbers of ‘adult returners’ began to
      also includes the training provision formerly     (LETBs), and INTREO will operate as a single
      delivered by FÁS through its training centres,    point of contact for all employment and
      as well as specialist providers and training /    support services (including education and
      development organisations.This significant re-    training) for jobseekers and employers alike.      A MONUMENTAL EXERCISE
      alignment of provision forms a new sector for                                                        So we grew PLC provision ourselves – and it
      Further Education and Training (FET) – the                                                           was nothing short of a monumental exercise
      fourth pillar of the Irish education system,                                                         in curriculum and system development by
      alongside the primary, secondary and higher                                                          teachers, that has gifted us with that which all
      levels.                                                                                              organisations strive for with their staff, true
                                                                                                           ownership of service. This largely because
                                                                                                           syllabi, systems and structures developed

          14     NAPD Leader                                 Leader – Supporting and Informing Principals and Deputy Principals
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