As a Principal or School Board Member:

  • who is your professional sounding board?
  • who asks you questions that help you see things in a new light?
  • who stimulates your thinking and brings ideas from elsewhere?
  • who is a bit removed from your work situation and yet understands it?
  • who provides you with a slightly detached viewpoint and a valuable fresh pair of eyes?
  • who do you trust to have the best interests of you and your work at heart, and yet is not afraid to be very challenging?
  • who motivates you and provides reassurance?
  • who assists you and your team to keep on track, sometimes to try new directions, and to exceed your original expectations?
  • who models principled ways of working, caring about people and about outcomes?

The answer to these questions is the person that you might term a ‘critical friend’, or a ‘mentor’.

A ‘critical friend’ is a trusted person who asks you provocative questions, provides data to be examined through another lens, and offers a critique of your work dispassionately and without political fear or favour as a friend.  A critical friend is an advocate for the success of your work who offers mentoring – a professional sounding board – who is available to help you in the good times and bad.

Optimal School Governance offers an annual critical friendship service that provides mentoring support for boards and Heads of Schools.  These can be tailored to suit individual school needs and budgets. 

Send us an e-mail to find out about our Annual Critical Friendship and Mentoring support that is INDIVIDUALLY TAILORED for the specific needs of each school.