Courage: An Historic Teaching Moment

February 14, 2021

My generation was weaned on John F. Kennedy’s Profiles in Courage.  I can’t remember, without looking, just who the future president wrote about, but in that less partisan time, and rooted in his experience as a young officer in World War II, the gateway for inclusion was certainly not political. Today, most educators believe that…

Big Takeaway #2 From the Pandemic Year: Cross-Functional Collaboration Is Not An Option

February 5, 2021

Post #2 in a series of seven: big takeaways from the pandemic year for school leadership teams. When the pandemic hit a year ago, most schools and districts created some kind of a “war room”: a place and time for people across a wide range of responsibilities to meet and make decisions, often in real…

Big Takeaway #1 From the Pandemic Year: Your Campus Is Not Your School

January 29, 2021

Post #1 in a series of seven: big takeaways from the pandemic year for school leadership teams. Great learning is not dependent on buildings, classrooms, or even campuses. Great learning can take place anywhere. Great learning is dependent on relationships, engagement, and intrinsic motivation, and these can be both amplified and dampened in a traditional school…

Biggest Problem to Solve for Independent Schools? A Quick Pulse Check

January 18, 2021

In our free monthly “If Not Now?” gathering, John Gulla and I asked attendees (mostly independent school folks for this event) to discuss and then post the biggest problem that needs solving at their school.  It was no surprise that financial sustainability came in at Number 1; we have known for decades that the independent…

We Are Not In Kansas Any More

January 15, 2021

For at least the last decade I (and many others) have been focusing your attention on our “rapidly changing world”.  Education writ large has been remarkably slow in adapting to this rate of change, at least until now.  Last spring I wrote about the nature of exponential rates of change, and how that acceleration is…

Strategy Now Focuses on Change

January 5, 2021

Nothing could be more true for K-12 education than this by a team of seasoned management consultants writing in the MIT Sloan Management Review: A fundamental assumption underlying traditional approaches to strategy is that industry boundaries and economics remain broadly stable over time. This assumption is no longer realistic… Change, not stability, are the key…

The Richest 45-Minutes of Educator Collaboration?

December 16, 2020

  As many of you know, in October John Gulla of the EE Ford Foundation and I launched “If Not Now?” a free, monthly meet-up where we host an especially provocative guest within a fast, interactive 45-minute format.  You can still register for future sessions here; we have an outstanding set of guests and topics…

The Twilight Of the Age Of Reason?

December 2, 2020

Reason has been a key tool in the human tool chest for untold millennia. For about 500 years, reason has been amplified by the rise of science.  What I think many people fail to understand is that science and reason are not about proving an absolute truth. They are about gathering a body of evidence that…

Classroom Resources: Separating Fact From Fiction

November 21, 2020

“Information Literacy is THE critical education mission now and well into the future”.  Superintendent Ken Wallace is shouting what so many of us are feeling at this moment of balance in our nation’s history, and perhaps in the arc of human history.  For millenia, humanity has struggled with what to believe, with contrary narratives from…

Time To Plan For Post-Pandemic

November 16, 2020

It is time to plan for the beginning of the end of the pandemic.  With the still-tentative, but growing good news about vaccines, we can hope with some degree of confidence that, after what is about to be a very rough winter, some degree of normalcy may begin to return in the spring.  For schools,…

Can We Capture the Joy Of Being In School Again?

November 10, 2020

What if kids loved going to school?  Hasn’t this been one of our dreams pretty much forever, from the dog days of September and the endless days of Spring when we were young, to our adult lives in the classroom as teachers?  What if school was something that students looked forward to, rather than a…

What Is the Cost of Democracy?

October 24, 2020

Roughly $265, for me, on this weekend.  That is the approximate cost of gas and hotel to drive and stay in Phoenix to volunteer as a poll observer this weekend.  The role of observers is to watch for, and report, anything untoward at a polling place, and I both hope and expect it will be…

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