We need a bolder reform agenda, one that opens minds and creativity, radically changes how schools are funded, reinvents classroom and school house, changes our calendars and keep our youth engaged in learning year round, envisions less brick and mortar, more community connection and, that brings little ones to school at 4 and allows them move on, when they are ready.
While calling for transparency of student, teacher and principal data, policy makers and state leaders ignore calls from the field to have open and honest conversation.
If we elevate the value of reading, model and communicate, teach skills and solutions to reading challenges and set a goal of 'all students will read well,' perhaps the love of reading, for some, will be part of the result.
If parents, and if we, are coddling children, that is not necessarily a good thing. But, it is not coddling to protect if protection means to hope for children to be included, to be successful and to learn and grow.
How we choose to be, how we choose to lead, is the essential core of our potential success. The goal is to learn and get back up with generosity of spirit and lead on.
If we are to continue to develop an environment in which teachers can create the space for children to explore and discover (which is ironically part of the mandated shift), we must create the space for the teachers to do the same.
We are the good soldiers, the ones who enlisted to fight the good fight on behalf of children. We need leaders who know that this war cannot be won without good soldiers, thousands and thousands of them.
We cannot develop resilience without encountering some adversity. How can we help our children develop the emotional skills necessary to meet adversity and grow beyond it with strength, confidence, courage, and tenacity, or grit?
Let's figure out how to ensure we can close the learning gap our 4 and 5 year olds living in poverty carry with them throughout their school careers.
Hate toward any group has to become intolerable in this nation. One act of hate must be extinguished, not by a detention or suspension, but by an extraordinary act of bravery and a changing of mind and behavior.