“People underestimate their capacity for change. There is never a right time to do a difficult thing. A leader’s job is to help people have vision of their potential.” ~ John Porter
Our school is currently in the process of developing a school within a school – utilizing blended learning. It is a tremendous opportunity to implement many new and exciting pedagogical innovations and integrate technology to enhance student learning. The possibilities are endless—or at least they seem that way.
Two weeks ago I had the opportunity to present our very preliminary plan to the school board during a study session. At the completion of the presentation, one of the board members asked me to identify some of the challenges foreseen in planning the districts first hybrid junior high school. No shortage of talking points here. After addressing several specific elements, I mentioned the fact that doing this correctly—in a manner that will truly benefit students—will require a tremendous amount of research, preparation, and work for the entire school staff. In response, the board member expressed his enthusiasm for the project, but added that he was glad that I was “appropriately intimidated.”
Attending sessions at the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) annual conference serves as a further reminder of the task we have before us, not only at our school site, but as an educational profession. It is evident—based upon sessions, presentations, lectures and discussions—that the winds of educational change are blowing in the right direction. After participation, one can’t help but be optimistic about meaningful change in field of education. However, it is also a good idea to remain “appropriately intimidated.” We all need to recognize the challenges that lie ahead and be sure that we are prepared to be in this for the long haul. We also need to put words and ideas into action—moving beyond talk and utilizing every opportunity to model implementation.
Be enthusiastic. Be innovative. Be assertive. Be appropriately intimidated. Change the world.