A guest post by Margaret McLelland*
On Friday 25th March 2011 the NSW Secondary Deputy Principals Association is holding its second Professional Learning Day. This follows on from the first well-received PL day this year which had a focus on the digital revolution. The theme of the day in 2011 will be “What a change in education! What a chance for deputy principals!”. 
In response to our evaluations, there will be a suite of workshops so that there will be more interactive content and we’ll reduce the number of keynote speakers. The venue will be Citigate Sydney Central Hotel, which is close to Central Station and convenient for DPs coming in from country areas.
We’re in the process of designing the program and booking presenters and so it would be greatly appreciated if DPs could let me know of specific areas of interest they’d like covered. At present, suggestions have been more on ICT developments and progress with ACARA and news about the national curriculum.
We also like to provide practical, operational support for the DPs and school finances, O H & S developments and changes to staffing procedures are popular choices. Linking the digital revolution is schools to real change of quality teaching delivery in the classroom is also high on the agenda. Effective use of data to inform school improvement is another big area and one that DPs are often expected to manage.
Anyway, if there are any other suggestions for workshops and presenters, I would love to hear about them – sooner rather than later – as we must begin to form the basis of the program in the next few weeks and begin to book our presenters.
On a final note, a number of DPs mentioned how much they valued the time to reflect and discuss issues with their colleagues and so we’ll endeavour to provide for this on the day too.
If you are interested in working with a small band of DPs who will organise this Professional Day – it’s great professional development and experience – please let me know via email.
*Margaret is Deputy Principal At Georges River College Penshurst Girls Campus with special resonsibility for managing the professional learning delivery at the school. She is one of two Vice-Presidents of the NSW SDPA, again with responsibility for the Association’s professional learning delivery. With Miriam Wride, she won a scholarship from the Association in 2009 to write a paper on professional learning and school improvement and prior to that I represented DET at an international conference in Utrecht where Margaret presented a paper on using case studies to gain insight into what students understand about teacher professional learning. Margaret has also assisted with projects managed by DET Leadership and Professional Learning units.