Tags:SLPPImpact Report

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Impact Report review: Strategic Leadership for Principals Programme

This article forms part of our coverage of the 2019 Impact Report. To read the abridged version of the report, please head this way!  

The Strategic Leadership for Principal Principals Programme (SLPP) celebrated its fourteenth year in existence in 2019. This free, ten-month programme teams principals up with Capacity Partners – dedicated volunteers from the business world who teach strategic leadership, stakeholder planning and how to create the conditions for change.  

Who took part SLPP in 2019?  

Last year, some 115 principals took part in the programme, across 19 cohorts of give or take six apiece. Each principal had their volunteer Capacity Partner, and each programme also has a volunteer facilitator – taking the total number of volunteers for SLPP 2019 to 134.  

These principals came from an even distribution of deciles, with the Springboard Trust team taking into account PLD budget allocations, resource constraints, leader and volunteer needs, leadership styles and the prevalence of new principals in the sector when onboarding programme participants.  

Our geographic reach also continued to expand. 2019 saw our first cohort in the Bay of Plenty, while we also ran SLPP in Wairarapa and South Canterbury for the first time. We continued to support New Zealand secondary schools, while also developing a New Zealand-first programme tailored to rural teaching principals.  

This programme is a game changer - it's the only way to describe it
SLPP Principal, 2019 - Auckland

The impact of SLPP in 2019 

Through our assessment rubrics and reflexive thematic analysis, we could outline statistically significant improvements in several key areas related to SLPP. This included: 

  • Active engagement of stakeholders (including more buy-in) 

  • Coordinating a team around a focused set of initiatives 

  • One-year planning 

  • Clarity and understanding of school vision 

  • Developing change in a process-driven way 

This impact continues as principals move onto our Alumni Services programmes, with maximising student outcomes a key long-term impact theme alongside professional development and distributed leadership. 

Big changes don’t happen overnight – but the impact we have seen from SLPP lays fundamental groundwork for the transformative change that follows.  

I've been a principal for so many years, and all this time I had no idea about what I wasn't doing. SLPP completely changed that
SLPP Principal, 2019 - Auckland

Where is SLPP in 2020?  

Springboard’s commitment to continuous improvement means that every year, we tweak our programmes based on feedback from principals and volunteers.  

We revised the measurement module in 2019, and also looked at streamlining language across all of our offerings.  

Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic has also had a significant impact on how we work. Since first entering Level 3, Springboard Trust has moved its delivery online, with SLPP workshops and debriefs all taking place over video or phone calls. We’ll have more on how the remote workshops are functioning in a later article.  

Overall, 2019 was a fantastic year for SLPP – evidenced in the amazing celebrations we had after completing the programme. We’re thrilled about the impact and how the current year is progressing, and are looking forward to sharing the results of that work with you soon.  

Our Strategic Partners