Headship, whilst being one of the most rewarding professions can, at times, feel lonely and isolating. I know this from personal experience and understand the pressures faced by school leaders.
The opportunity to create headspace to think clearly was not readily available to me, however I recognised how crucial it is that headteachers have time to explore their challenges, issues and opportunities with someone.
Often, this is a Chair of Governors, Local Authority employee or MAT partner. These go a long way to support headteachers but can only go so far and can sometimes lack equity or transparency. The conversation is often focused on the school rather than the headteacher in these situations.
Having a coach is seen by some as a luxury and increasingly compromised school budgets often lead to headteachers neglecting their own professional needs. The opportunity to be truly open and honest in a professionally framed conversation cannot be underestimated. Equally, having a professional coach gives a supportive and yet challenging level of rigour.
In increasingly unsettled times, a coach is an essential ally to a headteacher.