In response to the posts relating to, “Teacher Stress,” a reader writes:
“I have been reading your responses and your answers for a couple of days. I have been reluctant to respond. However, as an administrator, I do believe it is a leadership issue and a teacher issue. It is the responsibility of the leadership to build capacity in order to build ownership. I also have to take the advice of my husband, the businessman, who constantly reminds me, “it’s NOT personal, it’s business”. But teachers do not view themselves as a professional business person. They are teachers working with children. It IS a profession. Unfortunately sometimes we just can’t get past the emotional part of our jobs because that is what we have invested so much of ourselves. I don’t see Central Office personnel as “bullies”. I often think they are disconnected from where the rubber meets the road and they are implementing in order to meet the state and federal guidelines and meet the demands of the board of trustees.
We hear often the phrase that teachers need to be flexible. We confuse that with schedule changes and management issues. Those are part of the flexibility issues however it is far more complicated than that. The complexity and complicatedness of education is beyond what we can, as local school administrators and teachers, understand. What we can do is work to make our school the best by doing our best, whatever it takes, and be committed to the leadership and peers we work with on a daily basis. We cannot change the system. It is what it is. Systems grow and change daily. All we can control is our attitudes, our classrooms and ourselves. So….working on those is a fulltime job.”
I have one small bone to pick in an otherwise near perfect post. I think we can change the system. I think that by focusing on what we can control and incrementally, yet continuously, improving on that, we can generate results that force others to take notice. Some of those who notice then take action which begets even more action.
You had a young AP from another district who watched how you ran your school. When she got her chance, she worked full speed to build the campus that she envisioned. That vision was partially shaped by your example. Now others are trying to copy her success.
You helped move the flywheel just a little bit. Over time that moves the entire system.
Think. Work. Achieve.