With many years of experience assisting school communities, we have developed a series of questions and challenges that empower teachers, parents and students to begin the exciting journey of innovation.
Looking at past innovations in the school, how successful have they been in stimulating, embedding and sustaining truly innovative practice?
Were these innovations shared more widely across the school and wider communities?
What mechanisms or forums are in place to discuss and share new practice?
To what extent have past innovations worked with or attempted to challenge the status quo?
Will your planned innovative practice have maximum impact?
Does your innovation have the constituent components of insight,
invention, application, and reflection and communication?
Have you developed a broad and compelling vision? Have others ‘signed up’ to it or coauthored it?
How can you best convince people your innovation will have a beneficial impact?
Does your innovation challenge ‘conventional wisdom’ and existing ‘logic’ or practices?
Have you been creative in developing scenarios, asking questions such as ‘What if…?’
Have you tried starting with an ideal answer to a problem and then attempted to radically think through alternative ways and means of getting you there?
How will you build on successes and failures and share this with a wider network?
Have you explored the whole concept of leadership and what this means in different aspects of education?
Have you considered alternative distributed leadership models for different areas or aspects?
Could pupils, parents, members of the wider community or local business be given leadership opportunities?
Can and should leadership be distributed more widely amongst staff?
Should you identify those individuals or groups best placed or most willing to explore and promote innovation in your institution?
Do they have the opportunity to learn from others and practice occurring outside the institution?
Have clear problem areas or challenges been identified that require innovative solutions or approaches in order to ensure any innovation has a clear and tangible purpose?