30 April 2006

Just Wondering

When teachers get together, it seems like the conversation eventually strays to how overworked and overwhelmed everyone is with their jobs. This includes administrators---another typical topic among of group of teachers. As these ideas came up on Friday, with people reminiscing about the good old days, I had to ask some questions. What did these teachers think was missing now? Why did they like the former admins better than the new ones?

The answers came down to one thing: intellectual curiosity.

They wanted principals who asked good questions and shared his/her thinking. They liked it when there were principals who saw problems and did something about them---even the tiny ones like paying attention to what kids were wearing. As teachers, they used to be asked about what they'd like to pursue within their classrooms---what answers were they seeking during the school year.

Maybe we just don't take the time to ask anymore. Or maybe no one is listening or caring about the questions. Perhaps education today is so focused on what the answers are that we've forgotten that there's joy in the journey, too.

How do we get back to that?


Unknown said...

I'm new at all this teaching stuff but what I like in the two admins I've dealt with has been a feeling of being on the same team. Not having to worry about being blind-sided by a principal in a discussion with a parent or student. And, feeling that all of us want what is best for the children. That's what I like best about my principal. Thankfully, I get all that. I would hate feeling that my best judgment was totally at odds with the administration of the school.

graycie said...

I think that admin is as overworked as teachers are. That curiosity would be there if they weren't buried under paperwork, discipline-needy kids, and parents.

I agree with mindfulteacher that it is a major asset to work with admin who "have your back."