A few years ago, I had the privilege to participate in a ten-day tour of four cities in China.
Photo by rmgirardin – Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License https://www.flickr.com/photos/30559266@N04
On one leg of the trip, I sat by a Mongolian woman who was fluent in English and on her way home after completing graduate studies at Boston University. We enjoyed trading stories about our families, home, schools, and studies. Toward the end of our conversation, she turned to me and asked poignantly, “Why do U.S. schools not measure up to other nations on standardized tests?”
This was a fair question. After all, I’m sure she had seen the statistics commonly discussed in higher education about the comparison of U.S. public school scores to students in other industrialized nations. I also knew she came from a situation and background that allowed her access to higher education, so she had seen first-hand how helpful her own education had been.
As a good teacher tries to do, however, I answered her question with some questions of my own. Continue reading →
Today’s episode is in response to a listener question, “How can we create a sense of ownership for students into today’s education system?”
Although answering this question could be very long, let me ask three questions connected to mindsets I believe are important for any school:
1. As a school leader, how have you envisioned the outcomes you want all students to achieve?
Do you dream about what you want every student to achieve in your school? If you’re a high school principal, for instance, you should be able to communicate to students and parents how you want every student in your school to accomplish learning, be exposed to challenging lessons, and be involved in great activities before they walk across a stage to receive their diplomas. Continue reading →