This article in the Educator tells the story of Kingston State School in Queensland, a school with significant social challenges, that has seen impressive improvements in student outcomes under the leadership of principal Trent Cowley.
When asked about the philosophy that underpinned his leadership at Kingston State School, Cowley said relationships always came first. “This underpins all that I do as a leader in schools,” Cowley told The Educator. “For me, the most crucial part of leading in schools is to form productive, meaningful relationships with students, staff, parents and the wider community.”
The article details some of the key strategies that are being implemented at the school, including:
- Focusing on reading, writing and wellbeing
- Re-structuring part of its leadership team, freeing up the Deputy Principals to act as instructional leaders in classrooms
- Looking for alternatives to suspensions where possible
- Introducing restorative conversations
- Looking for ways to support ‘at risk’ and disengaged students.