Sunday, February 13, 2011

Creating a School Culture....

How awesome is this?????

After watching this video above, I was almost brought to tears at the thought of imagining the possibility of EVERY student in EVERY school across the United States feeling this important on their first day of school.  Is it impossible?????  I think not!  Sure this is a little extreme but the students at Magnolia High School get it!  The understand the importance of creating a culture and climate in their school building that makes the students feel important, valued and accountable for their learning.  Yes this video shows tons of fun but I would be willing to bet that the same amount of energy that went into making this video, also goes into the learning of the students every day.

When the students and faculty of a building feel appreciated and involved and like they matter on a daily basis, everyone works to improve student achievement.  The students begin to understand that there are high expectations that have been set that they must live up to them on a daily basis.  They begin to work harder to please their teachers.  The teachers don't mind staying after school to tutor students or for professional development or faculty meetings because they know that they are being supported by their administration.   It's all about the culture and climate that are set forth for the school.  Too many times, the parents blame the teachers, the teachers blame the parents and it's a never ending hamster wheel of the blame game!  Can you imagine if everyone worked together to improve the culture, the climate, and increase student achievement instead of blaming each other!  The possibilities would be endless!

A lot of students today don't feel like they matter to anyone. Some teachers are around for a paycheck and a guaranteed two month summer vacation.  Parents are working two and three jobs and aren't home to see their students, eat dinner with them or help with homework.  Something as simple as a teacher telling a student "Good morning" or asking them "How are you today?" could make all the difference in that students outlook on life and their purpose in life.  Imagine a school that values diversity...truly values diversity and appreciates everyone that walks through the door.  Public schools can't pick the students that walk through the doors each day, but they can choose to make them feel valued.....

The culture and climate must be set forth and trickle from the top down.  Administration sets the tone.  Can you imagine the face of your administrator if a group of students at your school asked permission to make a video similar to this one?  Would your administrator allow them to do it?  To this level of ensuring that the entire school was involved?  The administrator of this school gets it!  They are not afraid to allow their faculty and students to take risks.  THIS is the kind of school that values each and every student that enters through its doors everyday.  THIS is the kind of school that I would want my kids to attend because plain and simply put....THEY WOULD MATTER!!!!

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