As education continues to shift, we need to evaluate the long held systems in place. Grading teachers doesn't make them more effective, constant conversations and snapshot observations will. We can only help improve educators if we take the time to get to know them. Admin, know your teachers. What are you waiting for?
Changes in leadership can create discomfort with staff, especially if the prior administrator handled things very differently. Your team needs time to get used to new leadership and expectations. As relationships are being developed, everything is being watched. Every exchange is an opportunity for reflection and growth to become a better leader and develop more connected relationships.
Since being in classrooms is really what will inform my ability to help teachers serve students, I know I have to get into them more in whatever capacity I can, especially beyond observations and walk-throughs, though I acknowledge this is a good start. How do I go about getting off the treadmill and onto the real learning part of leadership?
Going gradeless was an idea that would begin to address a more active involvement by the students in the learning. I shared my thoughts with the staff and the School Council but cautioned them that I would need to seek approval from the Board prior to it becoming a reality. Initial reactions by most was to wonder if I hadn't taken a few too many hits to the head in a previous career.
In a world that has more methods of communication than ever before it is important that we develop the necessary skills to effectively teach and model multiple forms of writing. By dedicating time to practice writing, we get better in the process.
Odd. Eccentric. Peculiar. Positive. Assertive. Open. If there have been characteristics that accurately describe me throughout my life, the above would be true, as well as a whole host of others. The simple fact, though, is that I always felt different from people around me. And although I may not have looked overtly different, my thoughts and behaviors despite my outward "normalness" diverged from the usual. It took me some time to get used to that, but once I did, I owned it. And the funny thing about knowing yourself really well, is that once you are true to yourself, ...
Knowing school law is essential when you're a school leader. This post is the introduction to my final school law paper about the evolving issues with social media and schools. Hopefully it will get you thinking about some of the inherent challenges. What has been your experience?
As we continue to acknowledge the nuance of learning and adjust expectations accordingly, student engagement and ownership over their own learning will improve. It's time to de-emphasize testing as a means of accountability and start working with the community to build relationships that apply the skills being learned and also better our surroundings.
Since we must evaluate teachers in New York, why not make that process valuable to everyone involved for the benefit of the students?
What happens when a school community decides it is time to emphasize learning over grades? Magic! Students are capable of so much more than we know; we must trust, release control and provide lots of feedback to support and empower our learners of all ages.