Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Bad blogger

I have clearly not been a good blogger lately. I started a daily challenge to correct this, yet made it only two days. Yeah.

But things have been good and busy on the education front nonetheless. I've learned a ton in my NJExcel classes, and think I'm beginning to think like an administrator. Last week, we toured two elementary schools and I learned a ton about school safety and facilities, even discovering some of the things for which one might not expect a principal to be responsible....

A photo posted by @smallbutfeisty78 on

As a candidate for NJExcel, I must complete a series of projects in addition to internship activities. Through these, I'm learning a lot; one project focuses on I&RS (Intervention and Referral Services) about which I knew pretty much nothing. Now I know that this is a process available to support students who need greater levels of support emotionally, behaviorally, or academically. I look forward to serving on my school's I&RS team and looking for ways to improve the process for the school, the district, and most importantly, for the students.

Another project has me seeking to learn how a principal can build and sustain a positive school climate. Each time I tell someone about this project, I'm asked if the school's culture is not good. In reality, it's very good, but I want to learn how to create that. I've also identified ways in which our good culture can improve, after reading School Culture Rewired by Steve Gruenert and Todd Whitaker. For this project, I must complete an action research project, which required me to begin by collecting data. I gave teachers a survey from the book, and this process was interesting and enlightening. From teachers disagreeing with the methodology of the survey to the number of teachers who didn't return a survey at all and/or how many I had to chase down and hand a survey and stand over to get results. Enlightening indeed.

This summer, I'll work with my principal on a few projects, and I will also work with an elementary school to develop their master schedule and also to work on curriculum for the district. I'm nervous and excited about both these tasks, since it will be so far beyond my comfort zone and areas of... well, knowledge, since it's so far outside my area of expertise and I know absolutely nothing.

I'm so excited about all that I am learning, the connections I am making, and the ways in which I am growing. Hopefully one day, I will feel ready to be a school administrator!

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Thanks for learning along with me!