Leading School Transformation is a three-day program about changing and empowering schools through 4Cs pedagogy and professional practice.


The aim of 4Cs pedagogy and practice is to create deeper learning experiences that promote agency, inquiry, feedback, embodiment, and relevance for students, teachers and leaders.

Leading School Transformation
Leading Change Program


27 May 2021
28 May 2021
30 Jul 2021


Sydney Masonic Centre
66 Goulburn St
Sydney NSW 2000

Target Audience

System leaders, including directors, Principals, Deputy Principals, Head Teachers and Leaders.


$1500 for all three dates

Leading School Transformation is a three-day program about changing and empowering schools through 4Cs pedagogy and professional practice. The 4Cs approach is responsive to the challenges and opportunities of the 21st Century by embedding creativity, collaboration, critical reflection and communication in learning, teaching and leadership. Transforming Schools: Creativity, Critical Reflection, Communication, Collaboration (2017), by Miranda Jefferson and Michael Anderson, details the theory, research and practical strategies behind the 4Cs approach.

The 4Cs approach is dedicated to applying the most relevant research to support schools as they reinvent themselves to meet the emerging needs of students, staff and the community. The approach uses unique evidence-driven processes and products that have the potential to transform learning and schools. Leading School Transformation introduces tools, strategies and systems to begin the transformation process.

The professional learning of Leading School Transformation is an experience of 4Cs pedagogy and processes. The course includes workshop activities that are authentic and experiential in using creativity, critical reflection, communication and collaboration. The aim of 4Cs pedagogy and practice is to create deeper learning experiences that promote agency, inquiry, feedback, embodiment, and relevance for students, teachers and leaders.

By the end of Phase 1 of the course (Days 1 and 2), leaders will have an action inquiry to implement at their school, with the intent of introducing and developing the beginning of 4Cs transformation. Reporting back and reflections from that inquiry will take place on Day 3 in a school involved in 4Cs transformation.


System leaders, including directors, Principals, Deputy Principals, Head Teachers and Leaders are invited to register.

Participants will develop:

  • An understanding of their own and their school’s readiness for transformation.
  • A practical and contextually applicable understanding of how the 4Cs can drive school transformation
  • A working introduction of how the 4Cs can be implemented through collaborative leadership.
  • Opportunities to make plans for transformation and reflect on the initial stages of the implementation of those plans

PROGRAM STRUCTURE (3 days workshop)


  • Day 1 – Introduction to Leading School Transformation
  • Day 2 – Transformation into Action


  • Day 3 – Immersive School Experience


  • Leading Transformation through the 4Cs: Participants will learn about the 4Cs approach and how it applies in schools
  • Implementing the 4Cs for School Transformation: Participants will engage with frameworks and tools for implementing the 4Cs
  • Planning for Collaborative, Creative, Critically Reflective and Communicative Transformation: Participants will plan for change in their schools using the 4Cs
  • Reflection on the Transformation Journey: Participants will reflect on and review the transformation journey in schools
  • Developing a Renewed Agenda for Change: Participants will develop and implement strategies for sustainable change using AIFER (Agency, Inquiry, Feedback, Experiential/Embodied and Rich tasks)
  • Understanding School Transformation: Participants will view change at a policy, practice and research level

The content of the workshop has a firm foundation in the most recent change management research, and demonstrates clear links to the Australian Professional Standard for Principals – Professional Practices.

The workshop is highly practical with significant time for planning and implementing the skills and knowledge in the workplace.


Day 1: Introduction to Leading School Transformation

  • Session 1 - A thought experiment: Are schools equipped for transformation?
    This session uses 4C pedagogical strategies and problem solving activities to consider the struggles, frustrations and encouragers for school transformation. Questions that arise from these discussions will be used in the forum with guest speaker leaders on Day 2. Stories from schools will be shared and the implications of those narratives will frame how school leaders are positioned for transformation in learning, teaching and leadership.
  • Session 2 - Diving deeper into learning
    This session continues to use 4C pedagogical strategies to explore deeper (or generative) learning and how it is integral to 4Cs transformation of schools. The research underpinning generative learning and the Learning Disposition Wheel is explored, and the Wheel is used as a tool to diagnose the deeper learning needs of students and staff. The 4Cs school transformation funnel is introduced to ascertain the school’s emotional, relational, and pedagogical climate for transformation. Engagement with these tools will inform and direct the action inquiries to be formulated on Day 2 of the program.

  • Session 3 - The creativity cascade: Mapping the contours of transformation
    This session uses a creative activity to map what school transformation could be. The coherence maker and creativity cascade is introduced, and the mythology and misunderstandings surrounding creativity is explored. The cascade is applied in collaboratively constructing the school transformation maps, and these maps are then examined and critiqued through a critical reflection process.

Day 2: Transformation in Action

  • Session 4 - Stories of transformation at the chalkface
    Guest principals will share their real stories of transformation and will answer questions from the group. The 4Cs leadership framework of vision, culture, structure, strategy and integration, partnerships, research and evaluation, will shape the discussion. Participants will reflect on how the stories may or may not be related to their own school context. The thinking and questions developed from this session will inform the development of each school’s specific action inquiry for transformation.  

  • Session 5 - Action inquiry: Driving question
    This session takes participants through a process to develop and refine their driving questions for the action inquiries they will implement in their schools. The action inquiries will be based on the professional learning activities and discussions from the previous four sessions. The driving question will meet smart goal objectives and will be shared for feedback in Session 6.  

  • Session 6 - Collaboration for pedagogy, practice and feedback
    The collaboration circles coherence maker will be introduced and used to frame the pedagogical strategy for feedback in this session. The driving questions will be shared, developed and refined as a focus for the action inquiry being undertaken. The actions, reflections and learnings from these inquiries will be presented on Day 3.

Day 3: Immersive School Experience

  • Session 1 - Collaborative classroom visits: 4Cs learning
    Phase 2 is held onsite at a school engaged in learning and practising the 4Cs approach. Session 1 involves visiting classrooms as collaborative learning for visitors, teachers and students. Before visiting the classrooms, the processes for collaborative classroom visits are explored, and framed through the coherence maker and collaboration circles.
  • Session 2 - Collaborative connections: Transforming learnings
    After the classroom visits, there are shared “noticings”, questions and discussion with teachers, leaders and students from the school to explore the 4Cs approach and transformation. The discussion focusses on pedagogy and learning design, and the school’s leadership approach to vision, culture, structure, strategy and integration, partnerships, research and evaluation (the 4Cs leadership framework).

  • Session 3 - Collaborative learnings from Action Inquiries
    Participants share their stories/experiences so far in their schools based on the driving questions developed in Phase 1. Through a collaborative feedback process, participants will learn from each other’s inquiries and focus on next steps in 4Cs transformation. This will be explored through a creative collaborative task, using the creativity cascade coherence maker.


Dr Michael Anderson
Professor Michael Anderson is an internationally recognised educational leader. He has taught, researched and published in education and transformation for over 20 years including 13 books and 55 book chapters and journal articles. His international research and practice focus on how the 4Cs can be integrated using coherent frameworks to make learning meet the needs of 21st Century learners.

Dr Miranda Jefferson
Dr Miranda Jefferson has been involved in leading innovation in schools for over 20 years. She leads programs, initiatives and research in curriculum reform, educational change and school transformation. Miranda has taught drama and media arts learning and teacher professional practice in the Education Faculty at the University of Sydney. She has also been on advisory boards for ACARA and NESA.