Saturday, 2 March 2013


We are increasingly living in an educational landscape shaped and driven by fear. And the research suggests that fear produces mediocrity because it creates stress, resistance, uncertainty and silence!
Colleagues who work and live within a climate of fear often experience stress because they feel that their future is unknown and unpredictable. Importantly for those of us passionate about learning and children's outcomes, colleagues who don't feel in control and don't feel supported often experience dramatically increased stress levels which impact in the workplace through absence, lowered performance and detachment. We all know from our own experiences that when colleagues experience fear at work and don't receive positive, encouraging feedback from their heads, managers and colleagues, they respond with resistance in the form of reduced effectiveness, a lack of participation, unwillingness to change and isolation. Colleagues working in a culture of fear often feel overwhelmed by uncertainty. This can make employees question their future, the future of their school and their long-term goals. Fear can also lead to silence in the workplace, forcing colleagues to refrain from expressing their views and opinions to heads, managers and colleagues.

If we are serious about creating excellence in learning we must eradicate the fear factor. We need intelligent accountability where we develop trust, develop beautiful systems and empower colleagues to be their brilliant best and work hard to release the magic in our little learners.

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