Head of School

Friday, November 06, 2015 -

Brentwood is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) http://www.nais.org.   It encompasses all independent schools in Canada and the United States and, for me, is one of the world leaders in education. Recently, they published a detailed report on the qualities of great independent school teachers - please see below.

1.  The best independent school teachers build strong relationships with students. They build trust and let students know they care about them as learners and people. As a boarding school, these relationships are exponentially more powerful. If time is the most precious gift one can give - our teachers are like Santa Claus!

2.  The best independent school teachers HAVE superior pedagogical knowledge and content expertise. The use of a wide variety of instructional practises from lecture to projects to discussion is key for the accomplished teacher. Furthermore, a passion and deep understanding of one’s subject matter is essential.

3.  The best independent school teachers have a continuous learning and personal growth mindset. They don¹t just recycle old lessons, but craft new ones in hopes of reaching every student. They have what Carol Dweck calls a "growth mindset."

4.  Finally, the best independent school teachers fit into the school’s culture.  This, perhaps, can be the most challenging to ascertain. What is our unique culture? How do we know teacher X embraces that culture?  

How do we ensure divergent thinking that will push us to be even better?  I  believe that Brentwood has a unique culture and I would welcome your thoughts on what are the 2-3 key attributes of our culture. Please email me at bud.patel@brentwood.bc.ca

Perhaps our most important asset at the school is our deeply committed faculty. They go above and beyond to help each child navigate the challenging and sometimes treacherous waters of teenage life. From Houseparents, to classroom instructors, to coaches, and arts instructors, this team of professionals not only tick the boxes noted above, but set an even higher standard - the Brentwood standard.

In the busyness of our everyday tasks, please join me in thanking these praiseworthy professionals. I am honoured to be part of such a special family of teaching artists.

De Manu in Manum,

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