I am very excited about the upcoming ULearn conference this year – not only because of how this event celebrates some of the best of what is happening in New Zealand schools, but also because I have the privilege of coordinating a two day pre-conference workshop titled “Building Future Focused Schools”. We already have an impressive line-up of participants, representing principals and senior staff from schools that have recently been built or are in the process of being built in New Zealand. The aim is to tap into this experience to begin building a pool of shared knowledge that can inform future policy and resourcing directions.
The workshop will begin with a field trip to a new school site, set in the heart of a ‘greenfields‘ site just north of Christchurch – soon to be a new town of over 30,000 people. We’ll use this experience to explore the issues and opportunities for visioning the building of a new school, and cover a range of topics from architecture, interior design and furniture through to curriculum and pedagogical practice. This will all be done through a series of participatory workshops facilitated by myself and Cheryl Doig. Providing expert input and the benefit of their international experience will be Damian Allen and Elain Ayre from the Directorate of Children and Family Services in Knowlsey, Stephen Heppell and Julia Atkin – all of whom have had extensive experience in the visioning and design of new schools.
Workshop dates are Monday 4th and Tuesday 5th October. We will be meeting in the future-focused buildings of Unlimited School in the middle of Christchurch. Places are limited to 35 people, so be quick!
There are still some places available in this workshop which is especially designed for principals, school leaders or boards of trustees members involved in new school design and building. If this sounds like you – or you know of someone who fits the bill – please feel free to download a flier here with all the relevant information, check out the ULearn website for more (scroll down to #12), or download and complete the registration form to register.