Reflecting back on Sante Fe

Musings from our time in Sante Fe co-hosting the International Relational Leadership and Learning conference

obs and some quotes from sante fe


“Reflecting on our past to build our future – a matter of being with life – it’s all about life.”

Sustainability ‘as’ contextually working in the many human and ecological tapestries – Seem to be circling back to indigenous understandings

Hold a common story and it is a story of ’emergence’. The future – how do we go from here? What do we need to know about ourselves?

Community is the medium and the message – Individual person is a myth – We are all kernels on the same corn cob.

Well being (whole hearted ness)

How are we going to establish relationships that enables us to survive in the future?
How are we going to rebuild our relationships with the natural world?


Maggie Farrah

Leading and serving through relationships

We need to bridge linear govt policy-making
Poor schools never catch up

How will our initiatives build better relationships?

Rel w self, other, context
– rel w self – Problem is within ourself, where do I react, practice listening to self, attention to our body, building coaching environment, stance reflecting on / in action
– rel w other – most different to self, over listening too, under listening to, best communities notice when someone goes missing, whose voice is not heard? Who hasn’t got meaningful relationships?
– rel w context – cultural, spiritual, confront the brutal facts, serve context you have,

Relationships will find energy in transformation

Perhaps relational leadership and learning – it’s time has come

Am I available? Engaged? Connected?

Whole hearted vs busyiness

Dr Pedro Noguera (Steinhardt School of Education, New York University)

“What community supplies: Building partnerships and systems to transform schools”.

“Can’t be about us without us” (Miguel Acosta)

Schools are influenced by their environment.

How can we use education to break the cycle of poverty?
How can schools become assets to the communities they serve?
How can we get out students excited about learning?

Schools must contribute to the well being of the community.

Strengths-based approach – social capital; cultivate talents / strengths

Process of capacity building – students need hope and (and collective) agency to break the cycle of poverty.

Balancing technical and adaptive work (Hiefitz, Leadership on the line)

What does it take to educate (serve) children in our schools?
Schools must adapt to the needs of the community.
Teaching is a cultural exchange. Knowing the children is the work.

Poverty is not a learning disability but, when poverty is ignored it can be disabling.

Understanding the constraints: agency, structure, culture.
Need to do better than before.

Educational leaders serve the community.

Hope lives.

Developing systems of support for students by developing the capacity of the school.
– Get to know your local community.
– Releasing leadership.
– Faith in what people can do.


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