Get out of the way!
Last week while visiting a friend at his school he told me about the hoops his co-workers had to go through for what should be a simple process. Honestly, I was a bit shocked at the red tape required of teachers simply trying to do what is right for students. I have been out of public school districts for a while, working in private and charter schools where the procedures are not as challenging. I guess I naively assumed regulations and formalities had improved over time.
Earlier in the year I asked our school’s Teacher Academy to help brainstorm some ideas to enhance each other’s experiences in the school. When I told them I would sit in the room and take notes and type, be there as a resource, but not interject or offer suggestions I think they were a bit surprised.
It’s not something we regularly do in educational systems…
Get out of the way.
The teachers needed a nudge from me to get started. But, after that it was smooth sailing. I trusted their contributions and professionalism to just sit back and watch. I was even a bit excited to see what would happen.
I thought about this situation in comparison to the one my friend shared with me. Teachers stepping forward to be disempowered and teachers being nurtured and encouraged to step forward.
Which environment gives you the most room for growth? The opportunity to feel valued and secure?