As part of the post-tsunami reconstruction and rehabilitation work undertaken by EI in cooperation with NOVIB (OXFAM Netherlands), a leadership course for principals was held in late 2007 in Aceh, Indonesia.
Jointly organised by the Australian Education Union (AEU) and the EI's Tsunami Project Office in Aceh, the professional development course ran from 30 Oct-1 Nov 2007, and it targetted the leaders of the 28 schools rebuilt by EI and NOVIB.
The programme emphasized on the importance of collegiality and collaboration, and participants were strongly encouraged to contribute through the active exchange of ideas. A key focus of the course was how to include effective teaching and learning strategies into the teaching process. This requires principals to challenge teachers in this area while at the same time provide them with the necessary support and resources.
The course presenters modelled training and development activities that could be taken back and used with teachers in their school for professional development activities.
The course presenters were Kathy Deacon (Officer with the New South Wales Teachers' Federation and, until recently, a primary school principal) and Maurie Mulheron (Principal of Keira High School, and member of the AEU Federal Executive Board). Angelo Gavrielatos (AEU's Federal President) also assisted with the course delivery.
This initiative represents an important step towards the creation of a strong and sustainable basis for the education sector in the Indonesian province of Aceh, which was severely disrupted by the 2005 tsunami disaster.