What are schools for?

Training? Preparation? Umm, learning? Learning, in my experience, is rarely discussed in schools. If brought up in conversation it is almost immediately morphed into “student achievement” or some other term that dodges a close and sincere examination of what constitutes learning. Learning is a process – not a thing. It is fluid and nonlinear – […]

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Purpose of Teacher Evaluation?

This post is inspired by a training workshop designed to introduce folks to a new teacher evaluation rubric. In this training we were asked to write words that represent the purpose of teacher evaluation onto sticky notes to discuss and use to create a statement describing the purpose of teacher evaluation. Many notes were created […]

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Mo’ Better Teacher Evaluation

Since we can’t seem to get away from formally evaluating teachers – here are some thoughts on improving the process: Teacher evaluation and professional growth is an essential factor in the health and culture of a school and its collective of learners. As such it must be a clear and understandable part of every teacher’s […]

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Toil and Trouble

A snapshot of Mosaic as we continue to develop and grow – both as a program and as a rag-tag collective of ambitious teachers and students: We all work hard in Mosaic … and for that I and others are extremely grateful and appreciative. Though some of us can be abrasive and harsh at times, […]

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The Day The Bells Stopped

September 28, 2015: One year, one month, twenty one days, three hours, and twenty minutes after the launch of our Mosaic program. It was a Monday. And it was the day and date of one of the most profound moments of my career as an educator. For on this day, at approximately 11:00am MST, the bells […]

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A 3-Step Filter For Edu Email

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about how we communicate in schools. You know, how we send ideas information, questions, etc. This post is about email. And, how and why do we email in schools? Can our inboxes be more pleasant places to visit? I think so. There are many ways to communicate with each […]

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Row, Row, Row … Your Boat

I struggle. I’m struggling. We all feel good and bad at times – we can feel in control and we can feel completely overwhelmed, but right now, I keep falling into a valley of sorts. I struggle to trust administration and educational leaders. I just don’t think they get it at times. And I try to […]

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Spirit of the Law vs. Letter of the Law – Thoughts on Teacher Evaluations

In 2010 the Colorado State Senate passed Senate Bill 191, which, among other things, mandated a new system of teacher and administrator evaluation. As part of its reform initiatives, my district modified the SB 191 mandates and tied them to a pay-for-performance program. Now, I tend to be an optimist by nature, but this post is going to highlight a few […]

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Blah, Blah, Blah … Wait, What?

I work at a seven-year-old high school that was physically and academically designed as a “reform-minded” institution. Here’s our mission statement: Our mission is to transform high school learning through meaningful Relationships, Relevant learning, and a Rigorous academic environment where every Castle View student will graduate with the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful […]

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