I'm baaaaaaack.

Hoarding All the Glitter Since 2001.

16 June 2012

And now you have to fix it.

Yesterday, I got irritated with this liberal thing I see a lot in education circles: the idea that reflection is enough.

It's not.  The purpose of reflection is to encourage future action.  And if your reflection is that something you tried didn't work, that is honest and important.  But if you don't actually change anything, then the reflection was useless.

I see this come up in parent involvement issues.  You hear a lot that some school tried something to get parents active and it only attracted certain parent communities - typically, those that were already fairly involved.  There's some handwringing about that, but the next parent activity?  Is pretty much the same and attracts the same people.

I put serious energy into parent involvement this year, and that meant doing lots of different things to attract a wider spectrum of parents.  Was I totally successful?  No.  So next year I'll try to refine what we did even further.

The other thing is that I did this myself.  I had the help of some parents, but I had learned that the parents at my school were not going to start a PTO without some serious T support.  Our parent liaison was not going to do it.  Our principal was not going to do it.  I thought it was important.  So I got started on it.  Now the trick is spinning it off so I can hand over some of the responsibility.

I get frustrated with change at schools that depends on other people, or that fails once and is never changed again.  School funding sucks.  Many parents are overwhelmed and suspicious of schools.   The conditions suck.  I want them to change.  Until they do, if I choose to get involved in this work then I better be willing to make things happen myself - or at least stop complaining when they don't happen, and wanting to be rewarded for admitting I failed.

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