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Opening Thoughts

North Carolina Teacher of the Year Cindi Rigsbee’s blog, The Dream Teacher, is well worth reading today as she talks about the opening of school. “If you’re in any way connected to education, you’re beginning to feel a simmering force field of energy about you …” she says. 

She’s right of course.  Education is perhaps the only profession in which you can start fresh every year, building on what you’ve learned, correcting your mistakes.  If you’re not bowled over by the expectations in those young faces on the first day, you need to start thinking of doing something else.  Even the most jaded student hopes that maybe this year will be different; maybe this year there will be a reason to come every day.   You can be that reason.

On a more prosaic note regarding the new school year, Ryan Bretag talks about meetings and how they can eat up valuable instructional planning time.   His Metanoia blog entry, “Take a Vow and Set the Tone,” reprinted in Leadertalk, gives school leaders six guidelines for meetings (don’t ever meet on something that can be handled in a memo, for example). Bretag asks if schools have meetings because they’re necessary of simply because they’re a ritual – a result of the “hierarchy” of schools.

Finally, the Southwestern Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC) commissioned this little film you might find noteworthy as you begin a new year.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in Practical Leadership are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.