There Is No “Magic Dust”: Building a PLC From the Ground Up. Anthony Muhammad. Magic Dust?. Instant Results with…. No Personal Commitment to Change No Threat to Tradition No Inconvenience No Accountability.
Instant Results with….
“Success does not permit shortcuts. It makes you pay all that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Napolean Hill, Think and Grow Rich
If we are serious about closing the Achievement Gap and creating schools where each child is guaranteed a quality education at a chance at living their dreams
We must abandon the Magic Dust mentality!
“If schools are to be transformed into learning communities, educators must be prepared first of all to acknowledge that the traditional guiding model of education is no longer relevant in a post-industrial, knowledge-based society. Second, they must embrace ideas and assumptions that are radically different than those that have guided schools in the past.”
Richard DuFour and Robert Eaker
Professional Learning Communities at Work (1998)
Technical and Cultural Changes that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Shared Mission, Vision, Values, and Goals
Structural change that is not supported by cultural change will eventually be overwhelmed by the culture, for it is in the culture that any organization finds meaning
(All children DO learn, they just do not always learn what we want them to learn)
“Drop Your Tools” Research
Norman Maclean’s, Young Men and Fire
Compliance that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Maintaining status quo
Obsession with management tasks
Appearances are more important than effectiveness
Survival of the organization is the goal
Goals are clear, reasonable, and lofty
Everyone is clear about their role in the ascension
Leader models the behavior he/she wants to see in others
Excelling in the only optionCompliance vs. Vision
Leads to ………..
“We will work collaboratively to ensure that each student will be prepared for post-secondary education.”
Professional Learning Community
They are only useful if you are trying to go somewhere!!!
Political that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Concerned with self-interest
Alliances with special interest groups
Dedication to the mission of the school
Holds self and others accountable for contribution toward organizational goalsPolitical vs. Principled
Community – A group linked by common interest
Dictator that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Catalyst for motion is coercion and manipulation
Rarely shows appreciation
Catalyst for motion is inspiration
Consistently celebrates behavior that moves the community closer to its goalsDictator vs. Motivator
“They (leaders) recognize that one of the most significant responsibilities of a leader is to help others believe in their own capacity to lead, and their goal is to ensure that every classroom is directed by a confident and capable teacher-leader.”
Bob Eaker and Deborah Gonzalez
Vague that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Emphasis on averages
Comfortable with stereotypes
Concerned with the student as an individual
Believes that every student problem has a solutionVague vs. Precise
Why aren’t they learning?
Descriptive that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Restating the obvious
Reinforces current level of thinking
Rooted in frustration
Solving problem is not important
Information is used for diagnosis
Challenges current level of thinking
Rooted in mission
Solving the problem is the only acceptable outcomeDescriptive vs. Prescriptive
In School Tutoring that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Certification that is due, and it only rears its head after all fees are paid.”
Minimal requirement to enter a field
Allows a person to operate at a basic level
Requires little to no ongoing commitment
Requires a commitment to scholarship
Consistently develops skills in an evolving field
Requires an ongoing commitmentCertification vs. Professionalism
Why is reform so difficult?
Where do you go from here?
Will you sit on your hands and wait for change?
Will you go to work and make a difference in the lives of your children and community?