It has been a busy couple of weeks at IES Solna, since officially starting as Principal.
‘So, what does a Principal without an operational school actually do?’
Well, over the last two weeks, this is exactly what I have been finding out! I completed my journey at IES Årsta earlier this month and I have to admit while being hugely excited at the prospect of starting my new role, the moment was tinged with fond memories and more than a little nostalgia. Having been part of the founding leadership team at the school since its opening in 2017, the school, like for many other IES educators, became more than just a workplace. However, as I move forward as Principal of IES Solna, the learning experiences I have had in this previous role have put me in a fortunate position, one that stands me in good stead as I start to lay the foundations and prepare for our new school so open.
As well as the customary meetings and inductions, I have used my first two weeks starting to recruit a strong team of educators, interviewing teachers and other educators who are hugely excited about the prospect of working at IES Solna. Having interviewed a range of individuals, some of who live in the Solna area, to others experienced international educators located across three different continents, I can say with confidence that the team we are putting together are all committed to making our school the very best it can be. From the conversations I have had, I can report that they all share my vision of bilingual education in a calm, safe environment where students have the opportunity to embed a strong foundation of knowledge from which they can build genuine understanding across all academic areas.
I have also spent time looking at the school building as it develops; at least from the outside! The Ingenting area has become part of my weekly running route so I can check on the progress of the development and seeing the school take physical shape is something that I continue to look forward to over the next few months. In addition, in the moments I have been at my desk, I have welcomed the opportunity to talk to some of IES Solna’s prospective parents answering questions about the school and the admissions process. I welcome these conversations and as both a parent and educator I understand fully the importance and difficulty of making decisions around changing schools.
As you are aware, our core values of Internationella Engelska Skolan are three fold. To provide high quality and academic education, to promote genuine bilingualism and develop and maintain a calm and safe learning environment where teachers can teach and students can learn. These values will form the foundation of everything we do at IES Solna as it develops. However, each school, as it develops in harmony with its local community and unique cultural and social context, develops its own personality. My vision for IES Solna is one where community is at its heart, where our diversity will be our strength and where we will all learn to care for ourselves, each other and the environment. As a resident of Solna, I am excited to be able to work with the community's wider aim of creating a more environmentally aware and sustainable school and area. I will share more ideas and plans as the months continue.