In response to the post, “Dress Code and More,” a reader writes.
“To comment on how deep this goes, I was recently at a job interview for a secondary school that was barely above water. Out of the four secondary schools in the district, three of them are Unacceptable and the fourth made acceptable by a just a handful of students.
One of the first questions they asked me was, “What would I do to improve school spirit among the students?”
My answer was shaped by Cain and my experiences. I told the interview committee that student school spirit would improve when the faculty began to put a value on school spirit. When the faculty shows up in large number to student activities, school spirit will increase. When the faculty cheers kids on in the hallways, school spirit will improve. Until the faculty engages, I told the interview committee, school spirit will remain as it is.”
Absolutely. I had similar conversations with some secondary principals this week. I pointed out that on their campuses there was no ownership and no “connectedness.” Immediately, everyone jumped on how it was the kids, community, parents, poverty, and the rest of the usual excuses. I told them just watch the halls with me. When the bell rang, they saw the following: Few teachers in the halls; no conversations between adults and students; teachers ignoring kids to talk to other teachers; kids disrespecting each other and adults; AP engaged in ‘yell and tell’ to move traffic; police officers intimidating kids who could be intimidated and patting the “tough” kids on the back.
You can bemoan culture and climate or you can do something about it. And doing something about it means changing adult practice.
Think. Work. Achieve.