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Student Leadership

Student Leadership Development (SLD) in Dunman Secondary School

Every Dunmanite, an Empathetic Leader


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The mission of Dunman Secondary School Student Leadership Development (SLD) programme is to “provide leadership opportunities for all student leaders the potential to be an empathetic leader.”

This is in line with the school’s vision of “nurturing self-directed and inquisitive Dunman student leaders to lead change in communities” and the school’s values of Discernment, Discipline, Daring, Determination and Duty.

The school leadership programmes enable students to be involved in mentoring through peer support programmes, planning and running school key events, as well as providing a positive impact on the school and community.

To effectively develop students across levels, leadership opportunities and training are provided for all students at various platforms. 


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SLD at Dunman Secondary School is undergirded by The Leadership Challenge (TLC) developed by Kouzes and Posner’s (K&P), framed by the 5 Practices of Exemplary Leadership. The school believes that the 5 Practices serve as effective guidelines to create the desired behaviours of an exemplary servant leader. The use of TLC is uniquely contextualised and integrated within the school’s CCE curriculum. It ensures that all students undergo baseline leadership development across their years in school.


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Weaving SLD into Dunman’s CCE Curriculum


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In Dunman Secondary School, SLD is an integral part of character development. As such, the TLC model is aligned and integrated into the school’s CCE curriculum. This ensures that every student is taught the values and principles of leadership.

The alignment of SLD with CCE sends a strong and clear message that sound values forms the foundation of leadership. The 3 Big Ideas of CCE, “Becoming My Best Self, Building Connections and Making Choices”, are used as the lens to frame and spearhead the teaching of TLC leadership practices within the school.

Synthesis

Dunman Secondary School plans cohort-specific themes as part of a student’s development within its CCE curriculum. Each theme grows and develops each Dunmanite in the 5Ds as they progress from Secondary One to Five. The TLC’s practices are aligned to each cohort’s theme to ensure that the student leaders’ development build on the existing values and skillsets they have learnt.

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Dunman’s Student Leadership Framework – S.T.E.E.R

Dunman’s Leadership Framework is represented by the acronym STEER to remind Dunmanites that Leadership is a continued journey of learning and growth.

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The cyclical process of S -Selection, T-Training, E-empowerment, E-Evaluation and R-Recognition forms the intentional development of every Dunmanite through programmes that are competencies-driven (unpacked from TLC) and values-anchored (cascaded from the 5Ds).

Leadership Trainings & Opportunities


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Training and Empowerment of Our Student Leaders

In Dunman, we adopt a two-pronged approach to the training and empowerment of our student leaders.

Training focuses on the formal study of leadership (theory/ TLC basics) while Empowerment is the practice and application of leadership (action), with deep critical reflections service as a bridge between them.

This reflection phase is important because leadership is a journey that requires contemplation and introspection to internalise learning.

A Dunmanites’ Student Leadership Developmental Journey


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A Dunmanites’ Student Leadership journey progresses through different developmental stages. Each stage is age appropriate, with a leadership focus aligned to the cohort themes of ‘Start Well’ (Sec1), ‘Decide On’ (Sec2), ‘Grow Together’ (Sec3) and ‘Finish Strong’ (Sec4/5).

Leadership Journey In A Glance



At Secondary One, Dunmanites go through ‘Leadership 101’ modules to develop personal leadership. This includes the introduction of the 5 Practices of TLC, as well as an introduction to the 5Ds. The 101 modules strive to help new student leaders start well and prepare them adequately for acquiring new competencies.

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At Secondary Two, Dunmanites go through ‘Leadership 201’ modules to gain the competencies needed to lead others and to make discerning decisions. This includes the participation in the signature Leadership Training Camp where the alumni will impart leadership lessons and traditions to our future leaders. Prospective student leaders will also be inducted into the Students Council where they will take on greater roles and responsibilities. At this level, student leaders will also reflect on their personal leadership experience by utilising the Student Leadership Practices Inventory (SLPI) as a tool for leadership skills assessment and follow-up.

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At Secondary Three, Dunmanites go through the ‘Leadership 301’ modules to develop peer leadership to lead and grow others. Programmes such as Toastmasters and the Student Leadership Challenge will better prepare our student leaders to take on a wider range of leadership roles and responsibilities in various school events and camps.

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At Secondary Four and Five, Dunmanites finish strong with ‘Leadership 401’ modules to encourage student leaders to mentor their peers and to leave a legacy. Student leaders take part in the DLAI Summit and Sec1 Dunman Experience where they will be given the opportunities to mentor and share their experience with others.

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Evaluation

In reviewing the effectiveness of our SLD programme, Dunman Secondary School uses both quantitative and qualitative indicators. Quantitative review comprises a Year-End Student Perception Survey to understand students’ perception of the leadership training provided by the school and to find out if the students are satisfied with the performance of appointed student leaders. The Student Leadership Inventory Practices (SLPI) is also done at two critical junctures, one upon inauguration and another upon graduation. SLPI allows us to monitor and evaluate each student councillor’s progress across the Five Practices (TLC). Qualitative review of the school’s SLD programme comes from observations and feedbacks from the teacher advisors to the student leadership groups. Focus Group Discussions and Debriefs are conducted with student leaders to learn more about their leadership needs and how the school can better support their leadership development.

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Ethical Change-Makers

Student Councillors are encouraged to helm self-initiated projects that contribute back to both the school and community at large. Over the years, our student leaders have innovatively planned and executed innovative and meaningful projects that have allowed them to apply their leadership practices.

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Recognition

Recognition comes in the provision of opportunities / positions through the different leadership programmes. The Distinguished Dunmanite Leadership Series and DLAI Summit are good examples when selected student leaders get to participate in events that provide them with a greater exposure to leadership in different contexts. Student leaders can also look forward to being nominated for various leadership awards at the school and ministry level. These include the EDUSAVE EAGLE Award, STAR PAYM Award and the NATIONAL YOUNG LEADERS Award.

Heritage and Tradition

Dunman Student Leaders continue to display a strong sense of belonging to the school and are appreciative of the opportunities provided for them. Dunman’s SLD programme is also strengthened by our alumni who return to the school to offer their mentorship and experience through various programmes – most notably through LTC and the Dunman Youth Alumni (DYA).

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