The Critical Friend

Facilitating Change and Wellbeing in School Communities

By Helen Butler, Andrea Krelle, Ian Seal, Lea Trafford, Sarah Drew, John Hargreaves, Ruth Walter, Lyndal Bond

In today's school communities, the 'critical friend' - or change facilitator - has an increasingly vital role to play across the spectrum of teaching and learning, health promotion, and continuing professional development. But what is a critical friend and what does it take to be effective in such a role? Drawing on the findings of three intensive, school-based research initiatives, this book clearly defines the role of the critical friend and demonstrates a range of frameworks and applications for practice. Positive change in students' social and emotional wellbeing, and connectedness to school, is promoted through teachers' professional learning and focus on supportive school environments. The critical friend is pivotal in identifying the needs, facilitating the process of change, and ensuring a seamless integration with the core business, values, and objectives of the school. The activities, tips, and tools that are outlined in this groundbreaking book have been developed through years of research at the Center for Adolescent Health, Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. The book offers ready templates for adaptation to specific contexts across diverse demographics. It explains and explores the many dimensions of the critical friend, and it shares strategies that are designed to actively engage school communities in the process of change.


128 pages

Publication Date: 6/1/2011
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9781742860084