All Blog Posts (5,094)

Advocacy Doesn't Have to Begin With a Scarlet 'A'

Recently a parent I know told me about an experience she had at an IEP meeting. She described to me how she said, "My advocate suggested..." and watched the whole tenor of the meeting change. People sat up straighter. The principal looked wary and the note taker began typing more carefully. The parent asked me what I think happened.

"Why did they get so nervous? I used the word 'suggest' and wasn't demanding," she said.

As a non-attorney advocate, I always tell people my job is…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 21, 2017 at 6:48am — No Comments

School Leaders Build Trust by Inviting Others to the Table

Much of what happens in schools is a reflection of what is happening in society. Mistrust of leadership has risen but schools and districts have an advantage that state and national leaders do not. Most schools and districts are small enough that reaching out to the public who supports them is possible if the leader makes it a priority.  Although there is an expected annual effort to do this during budget season and board election times, school leaders can make themselves a part of the…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 19, 2017 at 7:30am — No Comments

So, You Want to Be a Superintendent by Larry Aronstein

So, You Want to Be a Superintendent of Schools: Topics for Interview Questions

  1. Improvement of Learning and Teaching
  2. Implementing the Common Core
  3. Building Constituencies
  4. What do you think are the most difficult type of problems that you will face?
  5. Dealing with an angry hostile crowd
  6. Building an Effective Leadership Team
  7. Succession Planning
  8. Response to Crises
  9. Developing a School…

Added by Dr. Larry Aronstein on November 16, 2017 at 11:30am — No Comments

How Do You Weigh A Teacher?

 Attending to the whole teacher, we suggest evidence of the growth and development of Habits of Mind can be collected by triangulating data between self-observation, peer observation, and administrator observation.  Many schools have developed surveys, group process observation tools, and journals to offer data regarding the habits. This data should be weighed as significantly as that of student performance. It is data about how effectively teachers are continuous learners who can both…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 16, 2017 at 6:53am — No Comments

Can Schools Be Inclusive? Examine The Data.


We can just look around and see examples of exclusivity, all those places where only like-minded people or those with some other shared characteristic are welcome. Meanwhile, public schools struggle to be inclusive.  Back in the day when the nation was distinguished by being a melting pot, it was the public school that made all the difference in who we were as a people. Questioning beliefs is not a bad thing, in fact it might even be a good thing. Reexamining past practice helps to…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 14, 2017 at 7:05am — No Comments

School Superintendents’ Contracts - For academic innovation, 5 years is better than 3

School Superintendents’ Contracts

For academic innovation, 5 years is better than 3


Jonathan T. Jefferson


Too many people in leadership positions are there for the wrong reasons: ego, money, power, etc.  Subordinates are often left wondering if their supervisor was the best available person for the job.  In the world of public school education, choosing the wrong superintendent could have a detrimental impact…


Added by Jonathan T. Jefferson on November 13, 2017 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Developing the Courage to Report Sexual Abuse Begins in Schools

Schools are certainly part of the foundation where students learn about power and submission, power and shame. Sexual predatory behavior has no place in schools or anywhere. We are concerned that educators may think this is not a 'school problem'. We think it is. We listened to swimmer Diana Nyad speak about being abused by her coach from the time she was 14. At 21, after discovering that another team mate had also been abused, she went back to the school and told the principal what…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 12, 2017 at 8:19am — No Comments

Two Hours to Courage


Dan Rockwell
Leadership Freak

Fear talks you out of exceptional and into mediocre.

Losing the conversation with fear means: problems persist, teams reach low, and you’re less of…


Added by Michael Keany on November 10, 2017 at 9:12am — No Comments

When Evaluation Teaches

There is a commonly held belief in the world of teachers. That belief is that schools have a responsibility to teach students how to follow rules.  Compliance is a good thing. Red lights are not a suggestion and if they were, the number of car crashes would be on the rise.  But teaching through grades as punishment, that is another story. The stakes are higher certainly, the older the learner is. But using grades as punishment runs counter to all the work that needs to be done as…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 9, 2017 at 6:46am — No Comments

Coaching a Math Teacher (Education Realist)


Added by Michael Keany on November 9, 2017 at 6:37am — No Comments

Are We Leading Change or Leading in a New Era?

 We have always highlighted our contention, and the convincing research and perspective of others, that leadership matters. Followership matters equally. Students benefit from strong, inspired leadership. Leadership brings the community together in times of crisis, articulates the direction and the purpose of movement forward, is vigilant to keep all safe as they travel on the learning journey, and keeps everyone coming back each day, not out of fear or consequence or retribution but…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 7, 2017 at 7:00am — No Comments

Do You Need a Coach to Get Your Dream Job? Larry Aronstein

Recently, a school district posted an ad for an assistant principal. They received more than 150 applicants, met with 25 for a pre-screening interview, and then a hiring committee interviewed 12 semi-finalists. The Kentucky Derby had 16 horses “run for the roses”. Those horses had the benefit of the best trainers in the world prepare them. Trying to get a leadership job is very much like a horse race.

Extending the horse racing metaphor. Have you ever gotten a tip on a…


Added by Dr. Larry Aronstein on November 6, 2017 at 11:30am — No Comments

'Personalized Learning' is for Everyone in the System

At a recent conference, Bena Kallick demonstrated this truth to be evident in the room of 80 or so educators.  A thundering silence followed the question, "How do individualization and differentiation differ from personalized learning?" Can you answer this question?  If you answer it to yourself, how do you know you are right? If you ask one other person, how do you know you are both correct? If you research it on the web, how do you know your source is correct? These are the questions…


Added by Jill Berkowicz & Ann Myers on November 5, 2017 at 7:34am — No Comments

Have you heard the word dysteachia?? You will.

Here is one of the most important fault lines in American K-12....

Many children in elementary school don't learn to read in a timely way. The school naturally doesn't want anyone to think it's their fault. So they blame the pupils. The  children have something wrong with their brains, some genetic mistake, some disability. It's not the school's fault if they can't teach a damaged child to read.

Quite commonly in the US, this genetic mistake is…


Added by Bruce Deitrick Price on November 4, 2017 at 4:30pm — No Comments

Alexa, Are You Safe For My Kids?

Alexa, Are You Safe For My Kids?…


Added by Michael Keany on November 4, 2017 at 11:30am — No Comments

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