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Friday, January 13, 2017

Challenging, Time Consuming Requests

Sometimes educators are asked to do things that take a lot of time and have little good rationale or lead time for the request.

For example, educators are asked to spend lots and lots of time at the copy machine. Some of the copies we're asked to make are simply because some don't trust our comments and correcting--they demand a copy to check our work. This, I must say, is very time consuming and belittling. It also requires lots of extra storage space for large numbers of copies that typically end up in the circular file at the end of the year. I believe that we can lessen this required secretarial work and replace it with good teaching instead.

Other requests include professional learning events that don't connect to need--events that require seat time, but don't help educators do the jobs they're tasked to do. This too can be frustrating, challenging, and time consuming.

Further, at times, we're asked to give up our valuable professional planning time to participate in tasks that don't relate well to the work we are doing. This too is troubling, and while we have the authority over that time, it's difficult to be asked and then not give up the time.

Distributive models and greater teacher leadership help to streamline expectations and events to those that impact the teaching and learning well. Better distributive leadership means that time is used with greater focus, relevancy, and meaning, and this is important when it comes to teaching well.

When we build strong, collaborative teams in schools, we do a better job.