What lessons can we learn from Queen Elizabeth II?
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II leaves a legacy for us all and for all future generations. In an ever-changing world, she was a consistent and stable force, embodying the qualities of a great leader.
‘Queen Elizabeth was educated at home like many girls from wealthy families at that time (1930s). After her father King George VI succeeded to the throne in 1936, Elizabeth became first in line to the throne. She started to study constitutional history and law as preparation for her future role.’
‘She received tuition from her father … and was educated in religion by the Archbishop of Canterbury. She also learned French from a number of French and Belgian governesses. It was a skill which stood The Queen in good stead, particularly on visits to French-speaking Canada and to French speaking countries.’
We will meet again …
The Queen exemplified all things ‘education’.
She was a lifelong learner, a strong communicator and a great motivator. She had a great work ethic, a strong vision and an ability to plan and execute words of wisdom when needed. During COVID-19, her address to the people of the United Kingdom is an excellent example of patience and leadership.
She was a great negotiator, she was calm in a crisis, and was always looking for ways to improve. In the same measure, she was equally adept as balancing her state role, finding alternative ways to connect with the British people. Her ‘extra’ roles in Paddington Bear and the London Olympics 2012 exemplify her modern approach and glimpses into her humour.
The Queen’s Speech (21st birthday, 1947)
Education leadership …
Let’s turn for a moment to all-things school leadership. Whatever your views are on the British Monarchy, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was a role model to us all.
Firstly, that leadership is more than just having experience. It is about having the resilient mindset and approach. It is about having genuine values and a compassionate attitude.
Secondly, that leadership is about more than just being in charge. It is about being part of a team. It is about working together to achieve common goals. From the good leaders we know, we understand that they must be a team player, something that is fundamental to school success.
Finally, that leadership is a demanding and challenging role, but one that can be immensely rewarding. It’s not for everyone. either. At times it can be a lonely role, yet also hugely rewarding. It is a role that allows you to make a difference to the lives of many.
This above, and so much more, is what the late the Queen Elizabeth II epitomised.
We should strive for a better world that is safe and prosperous, full of hope and kindness. The latter two are qualities that Her Majesty continued to remind us of in her day-to-day work her entire life …
As school leaders, we. can only hope that The Queen’s values permeate our school communities.