Questions

Educators: Are we all on the right bus? (reference to Good to Great)
Teachers: Does your curriculum let students experience your subject area, or just hear about it?
Administrators: Do you have the courage to tell your teachers NOT to teach to the test?
Political Leaders: Do you have the courage to put the authority for schools in the hands of the individual schools?
Schools: Are you willing to build a schedule that truly helps implement curricular goals and let the nonnegotiables be negotiable?
World: Have traditionally elective classes (Religion, Finance, Home Economics, Physical Education, Art, Music, Theater, even Computer Science) become even more important than traditionally “core” subjects?
Parents: Are you willing to let your child have failures in education in order to let them learn?
Students: Are you willing to let yourself learn for learning sake, and not for the grade?
Teachers: Are you willing to prepare students for the world THEY are going into, not the world YOU went into?
World:Can we really look at ideas such as the flipped classroom even though they seem to go against the grain?
Teachers: Do you hate when students ask, “Is this on the test?”, yet often say, “You better pay attention…this is going to be on the test!”
Parents: Will you sometimes say NO to your child?
Schedulers: Is it time to reconsider the idea of going from class to class in 45 minutes blocks for 7 hours per day….where each class is relatively independant of the others?
Colleges: Will you support high schools that try to implement learning environments suggested by Tony Wagner?

Parents: Will you allow your child’s high school career not to be guided solely by CollegeBoard.com ?
Teachers: Do you let your students build things during class?
Administrators: Will you support your innovative teachers?
Students: Do you have the guts to take a public stance on honor in your school?
Curriculum Leaders: Are our graduation requirements in line with what the world needs?
Students: Will you sign up for courses in the subject areas you love?
Everybody: Is it possible to have a class where the grade is not the focus?
School Leaders: What about traditional extra-curricular activities becoming intra-curricular and vice versa?
Everybody: Is our standard grading system in sync with what we say is most important?
Teachers: Do you provide time and support for students to discover and struggle to figure things out? Or do you give them everything?
Leaders: When you know it’s the right thing to do, do you really have the courage to lead differently, even when it might cause your school, department, or district to be an outlier?
School Leaders: Does school really have to be 5 days per week, 8:00-3:00 for 180 days? Or are there other options…not necessarily more, but better.
Innovators: Is there a different way forward?

About Doug Bergman

Head of Computer Science at Porter-Gaud School in Charleston, SC
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