Wednesday, December 24, 2014

If Educators Spoke Up More, Would Schools Be Better?

Many educators fear speaking up.

Others don't make time to do it.

Still more think it's inappropriate.

And some, like me, share.

Yet that share comes in a variety of modes, regularity, and length.

Many educators on social media support respectful, regular share. They welcome educator's stories, opinions, questions, and ideas.

Others in our teaching/learning communities don't welcome share, opinion, or thought, and some may even see share as a nuisance, disrespect, or inappropriate.

I believe that the more everyone in the learning community speaks up, the better our systems of education will get.

Transparent share means less time is spent on figuring out what others' think, and more time is available to debate, discuss, and synthesize our ideas to teach every child well.

I've made a commitment to speak up.

I work at sharing my viewpoints with respect and care, especially viewpoints that may include critical analysis.

At the root of my work is the belief that no one has all the answers or is the best at what we do, but instead, our strengths come from our honest, respectful share, collective goals, and collaborative work.

When confronted, I try to see a situation from another individual's position, point of view, or effort. Often, I gain new insight, greater affirmation, or critical correction and connection.

This deep analysis frees me to do good work during my on-task time with students. This also frees me to enjoy those I love well.

Our democracy is based on freedom of speech, the ability for individuals to share their thoughts, opinions, and perspectives. This free share creates a process of honing and refining ideas and work--it's a critical component of a free and prosperous society.

Social media has given us a place to express our opinions, opinions that are sometimes not given time or attention elsewhere. Sharing invites critique, comment, agreement, and disagreement.

In the end, our respectful, sensitive share makes us better. Onward.