One universal principle associated with change is discomfort. When a person chooses to change their physical reality and engage in a fitness program, the change process does not begin until there is discomfort. When a person wants to change fiscal and spending habits, there is a point where the desire to spend clashes with the demands of fiscal responsibility; and there is discomfort. Schools are no different. We cannot have comfort and growth at the same time. I am not suggesting that we seek and accept excruciating pain, but we have to be willing to be made uncomfortable if we want to grow individually and collectively. I have outlined two steps to help us understand and regulate the discomfort. The first step is for the individual and the second step is systemic.
Anthony Muhammad, PhD, is a much sought-after consultant. A practitioner for nearly 20 years, he has served as a middle school teacher, assistant principal, and principal, and as a high school principal.
All Talk: 3 Phrases That Resist Productive ChangeCategories: PLC
Change is a very difficult process, but it is the catalyst to continuous improvement. It tests our ability as professionals at many different levels. Sometimes, when things get too challenging, we tend to look for short-cuts or we quietly surrender. We live in a political climate that demands that we change, whether we choose to or not, but I have found that some organizations are good at creating the illusion of change, rather than being fully involved in the process of change. There are a three key phrases which clearly indicate that an organization is not fully committed to the change process.
Leadership for Tomorrow, TodayCategories: PLC
Effective leadership is a balancing act of support and accountability. Whenever either one of the principles are out of balance, the culture of the organization and ultimately, the productivity of the organization, start to suffer. As I travel the world and work with schools in search of improved results, I often encounter leaders who are strong in one area, but deficient in the other. This reality alone is not unusual nor fatal, but a leader has to be reflective enough to understand the need to be balanced and develop skills in both areas. Metaphorically, support should be looked at as an investment and accountability is the expected return on the investment.
Schools and the Hope for EqualityCategories: Instruction, PLC
The philosophical foundation of the public school system is the principle of equality. Equality is the belief that everyone deserves an equal chance at success and that everyone is capable of achieving success. Every system in a professional learning community is built upon this concept. “When a school or district functions as a PLC, educators within the organization embrace high levels of learning for all students as both the reason the organization exists and the fundamental responsibility of those who work within it ” (DuFour, DuFour, Eaker, & Many, 2010, p. 11). This concept resonates in our soul and makes us feel like we are a part of something bigger than ourselves. Unfortunately, what is true conceptually is not always true in reality. The truth is that we love the concept of equality in theory, but our collective behavior as a society rejects it in reality. Read more