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As the 9th largest school district in the state of Ohio, the Hilliard City School District serves more than 15,500 students in grades K-12, through three high schools, three middle schools, two sixth-grade schools and 14 elementary schools.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

August 20, 2012

What if You Flipped Your Faculty Meetings?

So, we’ve talked a lot about teachers flipping their classrooms.  Have you ever thought about flipping your meetings or professional development?  This is a pretty thought-provoking blog entry that just might get you thinking differently about how you model effective instructional strategies.

“What's beautiful about flipping your faculty meetings is you are modeling an instructional practice that you'd like to see spreading in your classrooms. Flipping empowers students, giving them ownership over the direction of their learning -- and that feels good whether you're 12 or 27.”

Imagine recording a model data team meeting, sending it out to staff to view, and then bringing everyone together for discussion about what they saw.  We could do the same thing with best practices in the classroom.  Let me know if you give this a try.  I’d love to hear how it goes!

Disrupt Yourself

As a follow-up to our Admin Retreat, and in the spirit of Disruptive Innovations and Disrupting Class, I felt Whitney Johnson's article, Disrupt Yourself served as a great personal account of the Disruptive process.  Johnson moved to New York and went from being a secretary to becoming a Senior Analyst with Merrill Lynch.  She walked away from this lucrative career to become an entrepreneur, and in her words felt it was "time to leave my comfortable perch and become an entrepreneur. Time to disrupt myself."  Johnson goes on to describe the lessons she learn in her own personal disruption.  Check out her Ted Talk as well  here

Managers: Get the Monkeys Off Your Back

Here is a familiar situation: one of your staff members finds you to share a problem that he/she is encountering.  You patiently listen and, in an effort to be helpful, you say that you will do ______ and get back to them.  You add that new chore to your insurmountable "To Do" list.  Now who has the problem?  

In "Managers: Get the Monkeys off Your Back", the goal is to "...minimize or eliminate subordinate- imposed work, get control of boss- and system-imposed work, and maximize discretionary time".  As the school year kicks off, I believe every administrator in Hilliard City Schools is wrestling to manage time to accomplish many work-related tasks.  I bet our delegation skills could be strengthened to find "more time" during our professional day.  

Managers: Get the Monkeys Off Your Back

Even Geniuses Work Hard

If you’re considering whether or not to join in on the iBrain seminar this school year, “Even Geniuses Work Hard”  is a great way to get a general flavor for Carol Dweck’s book, mindset.  This article supports her theory that individuals' attitudes about intelligence affect their behavior and achievement. Students with a fixed mindset think intelligence is innate and unchangeable.  Those with a growth mindset believe that intelligence can grow if they work hard and practice. What I like most about the article is that Dweck reminds us of practical ways for teachers to structure and facilitate learning opportunities in ways that foster a growth mindset. These teachers create a culture of risk-taking in their classrooms; emphasize the joy of a challenge; communicate students’ progress toward mastery; and recognize students’ effort and growth.  Dweck recognizes our ultimate goal of nurturing a love of learning and helping students to see both opportunity and reward in overcoming obstacles.

An Open Letter to Principals: Five Leadership Strategies for the New Year

Eric Sheninger, for those in the Twitter world know of him, is a principal that embraces not only the changes we see coming as a result of our students needs but is also outward focused on growing leadership among principals. He posted this letter the other day on his blog titled “Open Letter to Principals” outlining some basic strategies for leadership. I read through it once with it having little impact on my frame of mind, then we had Dale’s message Friday. I returned to the letter and re-read it, this time with a clear sense of how much our leaders will impact the direction of HCSD. As the kids come back, the staff’s return, and you begin the daily grind I want to say how much you are each valued and how important your leadership truly is. The message Friday will never find the intended audience without your voice.

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
John Quincy Adams

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