I read an article recently comparing and contrasting what parent’s want in their children’s school and what they perceive as the goals of politicians in education. As a private school superintendent we have to opportunity to pay attention to the wants and needs of parents and students and at the same time being concerned with the academic progress of the whole child.
Parents can tell you the name of a favorite teacher who inspired their child, the book their child loved and couldn’t stop talking about and the topic of a report they worked so hard to complete. Parents can tell us which teachers gave to much homework and how that impacted their lives as a family.
Parents remember the relationships the school staff, teachers, office workers and principal make with their child, if they know their name, and if they listen when the child speaks. They remember if they were listened to or dismissed when they came to the office with a concern. They can tell you how moving the Christmas program was to their parents, that they loved every squeak and clank of the school band. They can tell us all of this because for them the meaning of a quality school lies in a strong child- and family-centered educational focus that fosters growth through an intentional child centered educational program.
For many parents, the elements of what makes a quality school are not in line with what they believe is politically correct, the one size fits all curricular program, focusing on standardized testing and teaching political correctness. While parents talk about building critical thinkers, creative problem-solvers, and technologically literate life-long learners they feel that politicians are more focused on hiring testing companies to monitor student achievement, teaching to the test and judging success based on a single test score. While parents talk about smaller class sizes, and building nurturing relationships, politicians talk about the lack of government funding, the need to increase class sizes and focusing on the basics. “
For all you parents and or educators reading my blog, do you agree, disagree? Let me hear your thoughts on the subject.
...my journey as a learner ultimately leading to a superintendent position to empower and inspire 21st Century learning. I believe we need to inspire our kids to follow their passions, while letting them inspire us to do the same.